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DRUG/ALCOHOL POLICY

 

 The College is committed to the education and development of students, faculty, and staff regarding the prevention of the abuse of alcohol and other drugs. In order to provide the best possible educational environment, students are expected to attend class and employees are required to report to work in an appropriate mental and physical condition. It is the intent and obligation of the College to provide a drug- and alcohol-free, healthful, safe, and secure environment in compliance with the Drug-Free Workplace Act and the Drug-Free School and Communities Act.

All employees, including student employees, as a condition of employment, must abide by the terms of this policy and report any convictions under a criminal drug/alcohol statute for violations occurring on or off College premises, at College-sponsored activities, or while otherwise conducting College business. A report of conviction must be made to the President's Office within five days of the conviction. This requirement is mandated for all employees by the Drug-Free Workplace Act of 1988.

 

Violations and Sanctions

Moberly Area Community College's policy on the use of alcohol and other drugs is developed to provide intervention, prevention, and education to students and employees. MACC's Student Code of Conduct outlines the procedure for handling student conduct which is disruptive, illegal, or unethical. More specifically, the unlawful manufacture, distribution, dispensation, possession, or use of alcohol or a controlled substance while on College premises, while off-campus at College-sponsored activities, or while representing the College is absolutely prohibited. Violations of this policy will result in disciplinary action, which may include verbal or written warning, probation or suspension, student expulsion or employee termination, and/or satisfactory attendance in a drug/alcohol abuse rehabilitation program.

The College also has a specific policy regarding drug and alcohol testing requirements for employees required to obtain a Commercial Driver's License. The Omnibus Transportation Employee Testing Act of 1991 requires MACC to conduct controlled substance testing for CDL drivers prior to employment, after an accident, at random times, upon reasonable suspicion, and upon return to duty following the misuse of drugs or alcohol. Violations of this policy could result in suspension of driving duties, referral for treatment, and/or termination.

Additionally, MACC student athletes are required to attend a drug awareness education program and submit to random drug testing. Athletes may also be tested when reasonable suspicion exists that they are using illegal substances. Athletes with first-offense positive tests will be suspended from intercollegiate activities for one week and must attend substance abuse counseling. These student-athletes will be randomly drug tested through one calendar year from the date of the positive test. Athletes with a second offense will be expelled from the athletic program.

Students enrolled in Allied Health programs at the College may also be required to submit to drug screening or random drug testing. Positive test results for illegal drugs or refusal to submit to drug testing may result in denial of clinical site privileges and/or dismissal from the Allied Health program.

In addition to College disciplinary actions, violators of the College's policy on the use of alcohol and other drugs may be subject to legal sanctions. MACC upholds all federal, state, and local laws prohibiting the manufacture, possession, distribution, or use of alcohol or illicit drugs by students, employees, or visitors on College property, in the functions of the College, or as representatives of the College. Violations of such laws will result in disciplinary sanctions imposed by the College and will be reported to law authorities as appropriate.

The following are examples of violations which may result in institutional and/or legal sanctions. This list is not all inclusive.

  • Consumption of alcohol by a person under the age of 21.
  • Attempt to purchase alcohol by a person under the age of 21.
  • Sale or provision of alcohol to a person under the age of 21 or to an intoxicated person.
  • Consumption of alcohol on public streets, sidewalks, parks, or places where owners have posted signs prohibiting alcohol.
  • Operation of a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol.
  • Misuse of over-the-counter drugs.
  • Misuse or sharing of prescription drugs.
  • Possession, use, distribution, or manufacture of any form of illegal drug.
  • Possession of paraphernalia for intended or implied use of any form of illegal drug.
  • Possession of paraphernalia that contains or appears to contain illegal drug residue.
  • Purchase or passage of illegal drugs from one person to another.

Violations of federal, state, and local drug and alcohol laws can result in fines, imprisonment, loss of driving privileges, and/or court-ordered rehabilitation/counseling programs. Below are links with more information regarding federal and state laws governing the use of alcohol and other drugs and potential penalties. The information below is not all inclusive but rather is meant to provide examples of the application of the law.

 

Federal Laws (Title 21 United States Code Controlled Substances Act)

 

State Laws (Missouri Revised Statutes)

 

Prevention

The National Prevention Council led by the U.S. Surgeon General has recommended that colleges and universities adopt policies and programs to decrease the use of alcohol or other drugs on campuses and implement programs for reducing drug abuse and excessive alcohol use.
Moberly Area Community College has implemented a number of strategies to aid in the prevention of drug and alcohol abuse among its students and employees. These strategies include the following:

  • Information on drug and alcohol abuse delivered during orientation sessions annually to students living in the campus housing
  • Pamphlets on drug and alcohol abuse located in Student Services and at each off-campus site
  • Poster sessions and handouts on drug and alcohol abuse disseminated annually at College Health Fair sponsored by MACC's Nursing Department
  • "Under the Influence" goggles on hand at annual student fall picnic enabling students to experience the dangers of drinking and driving while impaired
  • Collection of videos and DVDs about drug and alcohol abuse available to show during staff development sessions with employees or student orientation sessions
  • Workshops and resources for employees and students available through H&H Health Associates, the providers of MACC's employee and student assistance program
  • Random drug testing of CDL drivers, student athletes, and students enrolled in certain academic programs

 

Health Risks and Other Consequences

Drug and alcohol dependency is an illness that can lead to major health problem. The use of illegal drugs and alcohol abuse by students and employees could result in cognitive deficits, loss of productivity, and other health risks. These risks include an increased risk of accidents, which may result in death or permanent injury.

According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), the consequences of excessive drinking include death, injury, assault, sexual abuse, academic problems, vandalism, and arrests, among others. Additionally, the National Mental Health Association indicates that alcohol abuse does lasting damage. One night of heavy drinking can impair a person's ability to think well for up to thirty days. Tens of thousands will eventually die of alcohol-related causes, such as accidents, cirrhosis of the liver, heart disease, cancer, and other diseases.

Alcohol abuse can compromise personal safety. According to the National Mental Health Association, alcohol lowers inhibitions and can make people more vulnerable to risky behavior. As many as 70% of college students admit to having engaged in sexual activity as a result of alcohol influence, and 90% of all campus rapes occur when alcohol has been used by either the victim or the assailant. People's perceptions of potentially dangerous situations often change when alcohol is involved.

It can be particularly dangerous to mix alcohol and medications, both prescriptions and over-the-counter. Side effects can include nausea and vomiting, headaches, drowsiness, fainting, or loss of coordination. More extreme interactions can include internal bleeding, heart problems, and difficulty in breathing. Also, alcohol can make medications less effective or even harmful (Harmful Interactions: Mixing Alcohol with Medicines. U.S. Department of Health & Human Services).

Like alcohol abuse, drug abuse also has detrimental effects on the individual. For example, the long term, regular use of marijuana can have a permanent, negative effect on attention span, concentration, memory, judgment and logical thought. Marijuana use slows reaction time, interferes with coordination, and impairs mathematical, reading, and verbal skills (Texas Commission on Alcohol and Drug Abuse). Amphetamines, such as those used to treat Attention Deficit Disorder, also have serious associated health risks when abused, including brain damage, skin disorders, lung disease, delusion, paranoia, and hallucinations, to name a few (Texas Commission on Alcohol and Drug Abuse).

According to the National Mental Health Association, drug abuse can lead to behavioral changes, including depression, declining grades, loss of interest in family and friends, over-sensitivity, moodiness, nervousness, paranoia, secretive or suspicious behavior, and excessive talkativeness. Changes associated with drug abuse are not only mental but also physical, such as puffy face, hyperactivity, tremors, excessive sweating, runny nose, hacking cough, and lack of physical coordination.

 

Resources, Referrals, and Treatment

The College recognizes drug and alcohol abuse as a potential health, safety, and security problem. Conscientious efforts to seek such help will not jeopardize any employee's job or student's status and will not be noted in any personnel or student record.

The Student Assistance Program (SAP) at MACC is available to all students, their family members, and significant others in need of information and/or assistance with any personal concerns, including alcohol or other drug-related problems. Through the SAP, students can access confidential, free, professional, short-term counseling, assessment and referral. Likewise, the Employee Assistance Program (EAP) is available for free to all employees and their immediate family. The SAP/EAP website (http://www.hhhealthassociates.com) offers immediate hands-on access to numerous articles, videos, and assessments regarding drug and alcohol use. Students and employees who need help in dealing with such problems are also encouraged to contact Student Services (students) or Human Resources (employees) for assistance programs, referrals, and other information, as appropriate. The Office of Human Resources maintains a list of treatment and resource centers throughout the College's service region.

In addition, the College's Behavior Intervention Team meets regularly to discuss students and employees whose behavior is of concern, including individuals exhibiting symptoms of drug and alcohol dependency. Students or employees may be referred to treatment by the Behavior Intervention Team.

 

Policy Review and Information Dissemination

As mandated by the Drug Free Schools and Communities Act, the College's policy on the use of alcohol and other drugs must contain the following:

  • Information on preventing drug and alcohol abuse
  • Standards of conduct that clearly prohibit the unlawful possession, use, or distribution of drugs and alcohol by students and employees on College's property, or as part of College activities
  • A description of the sanctions under local, state, and federal law for unlawful possession, use, or distribution of illicit drugs and alcohol
  • A description of any drug and alcohol counseling, treatment, or rehabilitation programs available to students and employees
  • A description of the health risks associated with the use of illicit drugs and alcohol
  • A clear statement that the College will impose sanctions on students and employees for violations of the standards of conduct (consistent with local, state, and federal law) and a description of these sanctions, up to and including expulsion, termination of employment, and referral for prosecution

The College conducts a biennial review of its policy on the use of alcohol and other drugs. The College's Compliance Review Committee oversees the review process. The goal of the review is to ensure compliance with all aspects of the Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act as well as to determine the effectiveness of the policy and make improvements as necessary to promote the well-being of students and employees. This includes ensuring that disciplinary sanctions are consistently enforced.

The College's policy on the use of alcohol and other drugs is provided regularly to students and employees of Moberly Area Community. The College distributes the contents of this policy via email to all students and employees on or by July 1, September 1, November 1, February 1, and April 1. The Dean of Student Services communicates the information to students while the Director of Human Resources communicates the information to employees. The policy is also located in the student handbook and the College policy manual and is available in hard copy format upon request. Additionally, upon hire, all new employees are provided with a hard copy of the policy.