Alcohol & Drug Policy

A. Policy Statement

The University of Puget Sound prohibits the irresponsible or unlawful possession, use, or distribution of alcohol and drugs by students, faculty, and staff on university premises or as part of any of its activities. This Alcohol and Drug Policy is intended to meet, at a minimum, the requirements of all applicable federal and state laws, including but not limited to the Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act of 1986, as amended, and the Drug-Free Workplace Act of 1988.

In accordance with federal law, this policy applies to (1) any student enrolled at the University in one or more courses for academic credit, regardless of the length of the student’s program of study, and to (2) any regular or temporary faculty, staff, or student employee of the university. The conduct prohibited by this policy includes, at a minimum, the unlawful possession, use, or distribution of alcohol and drugs by students or employees on University premises or as part of its activities. The university’s "premises" include but are not limited to its campus, facilities, and vehicles. A university "activity" means any activity sponsored by the university, whether or not it takes place on University premises.

The term "alcohol" as used here means hard liquor, wine, beer, and any other alcoholic beverage. A "drug" is any "controlled substance" within the meaning of the Uniform Controlled Substance Act [RCW 69.50], such as marijuana, cocaine, crack, amphetamines, barbiturates, and hallucinogens. The possession, use, or distribution of alcohol or a drug is "unlawful" if such use is prohibited by federal or state law. See Appendix A of this policy for a summary of applicable laws.

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B. Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act Requirements

In compliance with Section 22 of the Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act Amendments of 1989, all students and employees of the University of Puget Sound are expected to observe the following minimum standards of conduct relating to the use of alcohol and illicit drugs:

  • This policy strictly forbids the unlawful manufacture, possession, distribution, or use of drugs on university premises or in connection with a University activity.
  • Alcohol may not be furnished to anyone under age 21, and under aged persons may not possess or consume alcohol on university premises or in connection with any university activity.
  • Opened containers of alcohol may not be possessed, and alcohol may not be consumed, in any public place on university premises (including but not limited to campus facilities, grounds, and adjacent streets) or in connection with a university activity.
  • The use of alcohol on university premises or as part of its activities must otherwise conform to all applicable state laws and to university requirements and procedures (see Appendix B, "Campus Alcohol Use Procedures").

Any person who chooses to drink alcoholic beverages is expected to do so responsibly.  Behavior that evidences irresponsible consumption of alcohol, including but not limited to obvious intoxication (e.g., staggering, passing out, being unable to care for oneself), excessive noise, vandalism, excessive messes (e.g., litter, spills on carpets or furniture, throwing garbage or liquids), sickness, or verbal, written, or physical harassment, will be addressed through the procedures outlined in section E.

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C. Drug-Free Workplace Act Requirements

The university expects its faculty, staff, and student employees to report to any work assignment unimpaired by the effects of alcohol or substance abuse and in condition to perform their duties safely and effectively. In addition, the unlawful manufacture, distribution, dispensation, possession, or use of alcohol or drugs is prohibited on university premises or as part of any university activity.

In compliance with the Drug-Free Workplace Act of 1988, a faculty, staff, or student employee who is convicted in a court of law for a violation of criminal drug laws in the workplace must provide notice of the conviction within five days to the Academic Vice President, chief Human Resources officer, or Director of Career and  Employment Services, respectively. As required by law, within 10 days of receiving such notice the university will notify the U.S. Department of Education (and any other federal contracting or granting agency as required) that the faculty, staff, or student employee has had a criminal drug statute conviction for a violation occurring in the workplace.

As required by law, each individual employed by the university is hereby notified that, as a condition of his or her employment, he or she must abide by these drug-free workplace requirements.

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D. Information, Education, and Counseling

This policy emphasizes the importance of information and education in helping to prevent alcohol and drug abuse. In furtherance of this purpose, a copy of this policy will be distributed annually to students, faculty, and staff, together with the appended summaries of the legal and health risks associated with the abuse of alcohol and drugs (see Appendix A).

The University of Puget Sound is committed to helping students and employees to resolve alcohol and drug abuse problems. Confidential counseling and referral services are available to students through Counseling, Health, and Wellness Services. Also available to students are a chemical dependency education program, chemical dependency assessments, and a sobriety support group.

For faculty and staff, the university provides through the university's employee assistance program, offering up to three sessions of confidential assessment and referral counseling. In addition, the university’s health insurance plans provide coverage for the medical treatment of chemical dependencies.

For additional information about counseling, assessment, and referral services, contact Counseling, Health and Wellness Services (253.879.1555) or the Office of Human Resources (253.879.3369).

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E. Sanctions

The university will impose disciplinary sanctions on students, faculty, and staff for violations of this Alcohol and Drug Policy. Sanctions will be imposed in accordance with the procedures of the Student Integrity Code, Staff Policies and Procedures Manual, or Faculty Code, as appropriate.

Sanctions that may be imposed by the university upon a student include but are not limited to (1) conduct reprimand, (2) conduct probation, (3) eviction from campus housing, (4) conduct suspension, (5) other corrective sanctions as appropriate, which may include participation in an approved chemical dependency education, assessment, counseling, or rehabilitation program, and (6) permanent expulsion. Sanctions for lesser infractions may be imposed by student residence groups in accordance with established procedures. Students under the age of 21 who violate the Student Integrity Code while under the influence of alcohol (whether consumed on or off campus) may be charged with a violation of this policy.

When a group is under investigation for violation of this policy, no new university permits to host a social event with alcohol will be granted.

Sanctions that may be imposed upon an employee include but are not limited to (1) conduct reprimand, (2) restrictions on participation in campus activities, (3) transfer, demotion, or forfeiture of promotion or salary increase, (4) suspension or mandatory leave of absence, (5) other corrective sanctions as appropriate, which may include participation in an approved chemical dependency education, assessment, counseling, or rehabilitation program, and (6) termination of employment.

As required by federal law, the university will also cooperate with law enforcement authorities in referring for prosecution the unlawful possession, use, or distribution of alcohol and illicit drugs by students or employees on university premises or as part of any of its activities.

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F. Policy Review

As required by law, this policy will be reviewed biennially to assess the effectiveness of the university’s alcohol and drug abuse prevention program and to ensure that disciplinary sanctions are consistently enforced.

The university reserves the right as permitted by FERPA to notify parents/guardians if their under 21 year-old son or daughter has been determined to have violated the university’s Alcohol and Drug Policy.

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Appendix A: Legal and Health Risks of Substance Abuse

A. Summary of Applicable Laws

Following is a summary of certain Washington State laws relating to the unlawful use of alcohol and drugs [RCW 66.44, 69.50].

  1. Persons under age 21 may not acquire, possess, or consume alcohol. Nor may other persons furnish alcohol to anyone under 21 or permit underaged consumption on premises within their control. Penalty: Maximum $500 fine, 2 months imprisonment, or both.
    (2) Persons under 21 may not be in a public place or in a vehicle in public while exhibiting the effects of having consumed alcohol. A public place includes city streets and any buildings and grounds used for University purposes. Penalty: Same as (1) above.
  2. Persons under 21 may not purchase or attempt to purchase alcohol. Penalty: maximum $1,000 fine, 90 days imprisonment or both.
  3. Alcohol may not be opened or consumed in a public place. Penalty: Maximum $100 fine.
  4. It is unlawful to manufacture, deliver, or possess an illicit drug. Penalty: Maximum $10,000 fine, 5 years imprisonment, or both. The possession of 40 grams or less of marijuana is a misdemeanor (minimum $250 fine and not less than 24 hours in jail).
  5. It is unlawful to possess or use drug paraphernalia for purposes relating to the manufacture, delivery, possession, or use of an illicit drug. Penalty: Minimum $250 fine and not less than 24 hours in jail.

This summary is intended to apprise students, faculty, and staff of the conduct generally prohibited by state law. The unlawful possession, use, or distribution of illicit drugs may subject the offender to federal as well as state penalties, including imprisonment, fines, or both. Members of the campus community are expected to observe all applicable federal and state laws while on university premises or in connection with any university activity.

B. Substance Abuse Health Risks

Medical research has demonstrated the following health risks associated with the abuse of alcohol or drugs: (1) liver disease, including hepatitis and cirrhosis of the liver, (2) digestion and nutrition problems, including pancreatitis, peptic ulcer, and vitamin deficiencies, (3) memory lapses, blackouts, loss of problem-solving abilities, and other serious neurological disorders, (4) congestive heart failure, hypertension, and stroke, (5) numerous forms of cancer, and (6) birth defects. Additional information about the health risks of alcohol and drug abuse may be obtained from Counseling, Health and Wellness Services.

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Appendix B: Campus Alcohol Use Procedures

The otherwise lawful use of alcohol is permitted on university premises or as part of a university activity subject to the further limitations of these Campus Alcohol Use Procedures.

A. Campus Facilities Where Alcohol May be Served

The service or use of alcohol by persons of legal drinking age (21) is permitted on campus only in the facilities designated below, provided that all other conditions of this policy are met. Except as authorized by the university, alcohol may not be served or consumed in or adjacent to any public area of university-owned facilities or grounds. Public areas include but are not limited to the interior lounges, dining areas, living rooms, hallways, study areas, and kitchens of any university building.

Private Rooms

Students residing in campus housing, if age 21, may use alcohol in the privacy of their own rooms. Such use will be respected as a personal choice as long as it does not violate this Alcohol and Drug Policy or other university policies. Even in their own rooms, student residents may not permit under aged persons to be served or to consume alcohol. Kegs are not allowed on campus.

Union Avenue, University-Owned Houses, and Trimble Hall

Alcohol may be served in approved interior spaces of Union Avenue, university-owned houses and Trimble Hall, provided that: (a) the space does not open onto any public access, such as an entrance, parking lot, or walkway, and is not directly visible or accessible to passersby; (b) the space can safely accommodate the number of persons present, (c) non-student minors (under age 18), non-university persons (excluding alumni) or uninvited guests are not permitted access; (d) all other conditions of this policy are met.

Other Campus Facilities

Alcohol may be served in Niwa House, Wheelock Student Center, Kittredge Gallery, the Faculty Club and other approved campus facilities if all other conditions of this policy are met. Conditions not required by law may be waived for official university functions where alcohol is served as an incidental part of the event. The university does not permit alcohol to be served at all-campus events.

B. Procedures for Campus Events Where Alcohol is Served

Individuals or groups wishing to serve alcohol at an event in a student residential or other approved campus facility must comply with the following procedures.

  1. State Banquet Permit
    As required by state law, the event sponsors must obtain a Washington State Liquor Control Board Banquet Permit. The permit must be posted visibly near the entrance to any campus event where alcohol is served.
  2. University Permit
    In order to obtain a State Banquet Permit, the event sponsors must first obtain a university application to host an event with alcohol. The application for a university permit must be submitted to the Dean of Students (or the Dean’s designee) sufficiently in advance of the event. The application may be approved if all conditions of this policy are met. The permit must be posted with the State Banquet Permit in a visible place near the entrance to the event.
  3. Scheduling
    The time and place of the event must comply with all applicable university scheduling and facility requirements (including fire safety regulations). A student function at which alcohol is served normally may not occur during the week or during designated reading and examination periods. Nor may such event conflict with residential quiet hours or facility closing hours.
  4. Alcohol Education
    Student groups planning to make at least three requests for a university permit during any academic term must have an elected officer or representative attend an alcohol education program sponsored by the Division of Student Affairs during the first week of the fall term. Additional alcohol education programs are offered throughout the year.
  5. Host Responsibilities
    All members of the hosting or sponsoring group are responsible for ensuring compliance with this policy and applicable laws. The event sponsors must agree that they will not permit underaged or obviously intoxicated persons to serve, be served, or consume alcohol, and that they will not otherwise permit a violation of this policy. The hosting or sponsoring group must ensure that the event is adequately supervised.
  6. Identification
    All persons attending a campus event where alcohol is present must be able to show appropriate proof of age, whether or not they are personally serving or consuming alcohol. The hosting or sponsoring group is responsible for ensuring that only invited guests are present.
  7. Sale of Alcohol
    In accordance with state law, this Alcohol and Drug Policy strictly prohibits the unlicensed sale of alcohol at campus events. Requesting or accepting donations for alcoholic beverages and selling tickets for alcoholic beverages are also prohibited.
  8. Security
    Compliance with university facility guidelines may require the event sponsors to employ private security personnel. Persons employed for this purpose must be approved in advance by the Director of Security Services. The hosting group is responsible for ensuring cooperation with campus security personnel.
  9. Publicity
    Communications publicizing a campus event may not state that alcohol will be served or otherwise promote the consumption of alcohol. Nor may alcohol be used as a prize or award in connection with contests, games, or other activities.
  10. Alternative Beverages
    At campus events where alcohol is served, food and appealing nonalcoholic beverages must be provided without charge and in sufficient quantities to serve at least a fourth of those in attendance.
  11. Transportation of Alcohol
    Any containers of alcohol must remain sealed and covered while being transported to or stored within approved campus facilities.
  12. Noise, Disruptions
    A city ordinance prohibits excessive noise and other public disturbances. The hosting group is responsible for ensuring that the event does not cause a public disturbance at any time.
  13. Prohibition of Kegs
    The possession of kegs or other common sources of alcoholic beverages is prohibited anywhere on University premises or in connection with any university-sponsored activity on or off campus.
  14. Athletic Events
    Alcohol may not be served or consumed at university athletic events. Individuals violating this policy will be subject to disciplinary sanctions, arrest, or both.

The university reserves the right to refuse a university permit for any reason or to impose such additional requirements as it may deem necessary or appropriate.

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