Drug-Free Schools and Campuses

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Drug-Free Schools and Campuses

Drug-Free Schools and Crime Awareness, Campus Security Information Report 1993, and Communities Act Amendments of 1989

Purpose and Goal

The University of Louisville is committed to protecting the safety, health and wellbeing of all students, faculty, and staff and other individuals in our workplace. As a recipient of federal grants and contracts, the university gives this notice to students, faculty, and staff that it is in compliance with the Drug-Free Workplace Act of 1988 (Pub. L. 100-690, Title V Subtitle D) and the Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act Amendment of 1989. Students, faculty and staff are herein notified of the standards of conduct that will be applicable while on university property, business, and/or at university-sponsored activities. This policy is incorporated and is a part of the official University of Louisville Policies and Procedures.

This policy recognizes that student, faculty, and staff involvement with alcohol and other drugs can be very disruptive, adversely affect the quality of work or academic performance of student, faculty, and staff, pose serious health risks to users and others, and have a negative impact on productivity and morale.

As a condition of employment or enrollment, the university requires that students, faculty, and staff adhere to a strict policy regarding the use and possession of drugs and alcohol. The university encourages students, faculty, and staff to voluntarily seek help with drug and alcohol problems.

Prohibited Behaviors

Under university regulations, federal law, state law, and, in some instances, local ordinance, students, faculty, and staff are prohibited from the unlawful possession, use, dispensation, distribution, or manufacture of illicit drugs on university property, on university business and/or at university-sponsored activities. Under this policy, students, faculty and staff are required to abide by state laws concerning alcoholic beverages.

Kentucky law (KRS 244.085: lrc.ky.gov/Statutes/statute.aspx?id=45137) states that, if one is under the age of 21, it is unlawful to:

  • Possess or consume alcoholic beverages,
  • Misrepresent one’s age for the purpose of purchasing alcoholic beverages, or
  • Use a fake ID in an attempt to purchase alcoholic beverages.

It is unlawful for anyone of any age to:

  • Procure any alcoholic beverages for anyone under 21 years of age,
  • Drink or be intoxicated in a public place

(Public Intoxication: lrc.ky.gov/statutes/statute.aspx?id=19929)

University campuses and buildings are considered as public places for purposes of these laws, except for a facility licensed to serve alcoholic beverages, and a facility used as a private residence, unless university regulations state otherwise. Ordinances of the Greater Louisville area parallel the state laws.

The specifically defined standards of conduct, the disciplinary procedures, and the appropriate sanctions are detailed in the Code of Student Conduct, Personnel Policies and Procedures (PER-5.01), Staff Handbook (Disciplinary Action, page 8.2) and The Redbook.

In addition, it is a violation of state law to operate a motor vehicle while under the influence of any substance that may impair one’s driving ability (drugs or alcoholic beverages).

Prescription and over-the-counter drugs are not prohibited when taken in standard dosage and/or according to a physician’s prescription. Any student, faculty, and staff taking prescribed or over-the-counter medications will be responsible for consulting the prescribing physician and/or pharmacist to ascertain whether the medication may interfere with job or academic performance.

The illegal or unauthorized use of prescription drugs is prohibited. It is a violation of our drug-free workplace to intentionally misuse and/or abuse prescription medications. Appropriate disciplinary action will be taken if job or academic performance deterioration and/or other accidents occur.

Consequences for Violating This Policy

Under university regulation, students who violate this standard of conduct are subject to student conduct action from a warning to expulsion from the University. Students who reside in university housing are subject to further conduct action that may vary from a warning to termination of their housing contract.

Notice of Drug-Related Conviction

In compliance with the Federal Drug-Free Workplace Act of 1988, any employee shall notify the immediate supervisor if the employee is convicted of a criminal drug offense occurring in the workplace or while on university business within five days of the conviction. The university shall take appropriate sanction and remedies in accordance within its policies. The provisions of this section are applicable to students who are employees of the university. If the employee is under a federal contract or grant, the university shall notify the contracting or granting agency of the conviction and of its actions. This section of this policy is also applicable to students who receive a Pell grant (federal grant).

Health Risks

The scope and impact of health risks from alcohol and drug use are both alarming and well documented, ranging from mood-altering to life- threatening, with consequences that extend beyond the individual to family, organizations and society at large. The university, therefore, conducts regular programs to educate its students, faculty, and staff that consumption and use of drugs may alter behavior, distort perception, impair thinking, impede judgment, and lead to physical or psychological dependence.

Alcohol and/or drug use may lead to the deterioration of physical health by causing or contributing to various health conditions including but not limited to fatigue, nausea, personal injury, insomnia, pathological organ damage, some forms of cancer, pancreatitis, heart attack, respiratory depression, birth defects, convulsions, coma, and even death. Alcohol and drug use may also result in deterioration of mental health by causing or contributing to various conditions such as increased aggression, hallucinations, depression, disorientation, and psychosis.

Alcohol consumption causes a number of marked changes in behavior. Even low doses significantly impair the judgment and coordination required to drive a car safely, increasing the likelihood that the driver will be involved in an accident. Low to moderate doses of alcohol also increases the incidence of a variety of aggressive acts, including spouse and child abuse.

Moderate to high doses of alcohol cause marked impairments in higher mental functions, severely altering a person’s ability to learn and remember information. Very high doses cause respiratory depression and death. If combined with other depressants of the central nervous system, much lower doses of alcohol will produce the effects just described. Repeated use of alcohol can lead to dependence. Sudden cessation of alcohol intake is likely to produce withdrawal symptoms, including severe anxiety, tremors, hallucinations, and convulsions. Alcohol withdrawal can be life-threatening. Long-term consumption of large quantities of alcohol, particularly when combined with poor nutrition, can also lead to permanent damage to vital organs such as the brain and the liver.

Mothers who drink alcohol during pregnancy may give birth to infants with fetal alcohol syndrome. These infants have irreversible physical abnormalities and intellectual disabilities. In addition, research indicates that children of alcoholic parents are at greater risk than other children of becoming alcoholics.

Training, Counseling, and Resources

The University of Louisville is committed to the overall health and well-being of students, faculty, and staff and encourages a compassionate university.

AlcoholEdu and Haven online prevention programs

AlcoholEdu alcohol prevention program and Haven sexual violence prevention program serve as starting points for ongoing campus prevention efforts. Every incoming undergraduate student is required to take AlcoholEdu (up to age 21) and Haven (all ages). Emails are sent to their UofL email account (beginning about 5 weeks before their first semester begins) to provide specific directions for logging on to AlcoholEdu and Haven. AlcoholEdu and Haven are two separate programs, each with two parts. There is no fee for either program.

Visit louisville.edu/campushealth/alcoholedu-haven for more information.

Kentucky Medical Amnesty Law

KRS 244.992 Medical amnesty for persons reporting an alcohol overdose:

(1) A person shall be immune from prosecution for the criminal offenses identified in subsection (2) of this section if:

(a) A law enforcement officer has contact with the person because the person:

  1. Requests emergency medical assistance for himself or herself or another person;
  2. Acts in concert with another person who requests emergency medical assistance; or
  3. Appears to be in need of emergency medical assistance and is the individual for whom the request is made

ee KRS 2S44.992 at lrc.ky.gov/statutes/statute.aspx?id=42516  for full text.

Good Samaritan Consideration

The health and safety of our students is of the highest priority. At times, students may need immediate medical or other professional assistance. However, students may be reluctant to get help because of concerns that their own behavior may be a violation of the Code of Student Conduct. Although policy violations cannot be overlooked, the University will consider the positive impact of reporting an incident when determining the appropriate response for policy violations. 

Continuous efforts are made to make students, faculty, and staff aware of programs that provide information and professional services on matters related to the abuse of alcohol and drugs.

The Building Resilience In Campus Community (BRICC) Coalition, Counseling Center, Health Promotion Office, The PEACC Center, and the University of Louisville Police Department provide a number of programs and workshops using a tiered approach: a) primary prevention in the form of awareness, skill-building, and risk-reduction for all students and b) targeted presentations for specific high-risk populations.

The University Counseling Center is committed to assisting students with their mental health, personal development, and academic development. Because substance use is often connected to other personal/psychological issues, students coming to the Counseling Center with alcohol and substance use concerns are provided with support, appropriate therapeutic interventions, and referrals when necessary.