4.1.6.2 Alcohol and Drug-Free Campus Policy

Alcohol & Drug-Free Campus Policy

Middle Georgia State University is an Alcohol and Other Drugs-Free Campus

Middle Georgia State University recognizes and supports local, state, and federal laws and policies of the Board of Regents, with respect to the sale, use, distribution, and possession of alcoholic beverages and illegal drugs, as well as the Drug-Free Postsecondary Education Act of 1990 with respect to the manufacture, distribution, sale, possession, or use of marijuana, controlled substances, or dangerous drugs on University campuses and elsewhere.

 Standards of Conduct

  • State of Georgia Statutes declare that it is unlawful for any person less than 21 years of age to possess or consume alcoholic beverages.
  • It is unlawful to sell, give, serve, or permit to be served alcoholic beverages to a person less than 21 years of age. Furthermore, servers can be held civilly liable for damage caused by underage drinkers to whom they provided alcoholic beverages.
  • It is unlawful to be under the influence of, use, possess, distribute, sell, offer, or agree to sell, or represent to sell narcotics, hallucinogens, dangerous drugs, or controlled substances, except as where permitted by prescription or law.
  • To receive federal student aid, a student must not have a drug conviction for an offense that occurred while they were receiving federal student aid (such as grants, loans, or work-study).

Alcohol Policy

Middle Georgia State University expressly prohibits the use, possession, sale or distribution of alcoholic beverages on campus by any campus constituency. Student activity funds or state funds may not be used for the purchase of alcoholic beverages. Middle Georgia State University is committed to recognizing, upholding and enforcing the laws of the State of Georgia. Violation of those state laws, incorporated into the Middle Georgia State University Alcohol and Drug-Free Campus Policy, will not be condoned on the campus or at any activity held off campus by any constituency. Exceptions to the policy of no alcohol on campus may from time to time be permitted at the discretion of the president of Middle Georgia State University.

 Drug Policy

Middle Georgia State University prohibits the possession, use, or distribution of drugs and alcohol by students and employees on the Middle Georgia State University campus or as any part of Middle Georgia State University’s activities, whether on or off campus. Middle Georgia State University is committed to recognizing, upholding and enforcing the laws of the State of Georgia. Violation of those state laws, incorporated into the Middle Georgia State University Alcohol and Drug-Free Campus Policy, will not be condoned on the campus or at any activity held off campus by any constituency.

Student Organization Responsibility for Drug Abuse

Official Code of Georgia Annotated Section 20-3-90 et seq., provides that any student organization functioning at any university system institution which knowingly permits or authorizes the sale, distribution, serving, possession, consumption, or use of marijuana, a controlled substance, or a dangerous drug when such sale, distribution, serving, possession, consumption, or use is not in compliance with the laws of this state shall have its recognition as a student organization withdrawn, shall be expelled from campus for a minimum of a calendar year from the year of determination of guilt. The organization shall also be prohibited from the use of all property and facilities of the university system institution with which it is affiliated. These disciplinary actions are subject to administrative review and hearing procedures as are provided in the code.

 Travel Policy

Students should be aware that they are responsible for abiding by the Drug-Free Campus Policy and that they may be held liable, both civilly and criminally, in the case that they are found in violation. When students travel, they should know that their point of destination is considered an extension of the campus. Violations occurring off campus will be treated the same as if the violations occurred on campus.

 All students participating in extra-curricular travel are required to complete the necessary travel forms prior to departure and return them to the Office of Student Life. These forms are available in the Office of Student Life.

 Risks Associated with the Alcohol Abuse and Illicit Drug Use

The inappropriate or excessive use of alcohol and other drugs are associated with a variety of personal health risks, and risks to others. 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. Moderate doses of alcohol may increase the incidence of a variety of aggressive acts, including murder, rape, armed robbery, vandalism, spouse and child abuse, and drunk driving. High doses of alcohol often cause marked impairment in higher mental function, severely altering a person’s ability to learn and remember information and make judgments. Heavy use may cause chronic depression and suicide and is also greatly associated with the abuse of other drugs. 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 described. The use of even small amounts of alcohol by a pregnant woman can damage her fetus.

Long-term heavy alcohol use can cause digestive disorders, cirrhosis of the liver, circulatory system disorders, and impairment of the central nervous system, all of which can lead to dependence, particularly in person with one or more parents or grandparents who were problem drinkers. At least 15-20 percent of heavy users will eventually become problem drinkers or alcoholics if they continue drinking. Sudden cessation of alcohol intake by alcoholics is likely to produce withdrawal symptoms, including severe anxiety, tremors, hallucinations, or convulsions, which can be life threatening.

 Use of Illicit Drugs interferes with the brain’s ability to take in, sort and synthesize information. They distort perception, which can lead users to harm themselves or others. Drug use also affects sensation and impairs memory. Illicit drugs all have some health-threatening qualities, some more than others. Examples are lung damage for marijuana, central nervous system disorders for cocaine, heroin, and hallucinogens, and liver damage from inhalants. Dependence and addiction are constant threats to users. HIV is widely spread among intravenous drug users. Regular abuse of these substances generally exposes users to criminal elements who may influence users to become involved in criminal activities in addition to their already illegal drug use.

 Information on Alcohol and Drugs and Treatment Referral

Middle Georgia State University has no drug and alcohol treatment or rehabilitation programs. A Behavioral Health Provider list with options for addiction treatment is available from the Counseling Services (478) 471-2985 on the Macon Campus and (478) 934-3092 on the Cochran Campus. Programs listed as representative referral sources should not be interpreted as an endorsement by the University.

 Suspension from Public Institution for Convicted Drug Offenders

Georgia law (see O.C.G.A. §20-1-23) mandates that any student of a public educational institution who is convicted of any felony offense involving the manufacture, distribution, sale, possession, or use of marijuana, a controlled substance, or a dangerous drug, shall, as of the date of conviction, be suspended from the public institution in which such person is enrolled. The suspension shall be effective as of the date of conviction for the remainder of the term. A convicted student would forfeit any right to any academic credit otherwise earned or earnable for such term. The only exception allowed is in cases where the institution has taken student conduct action for the same offense prior to conviction.

 Student Conduct Sanctions for Alcohol/Drug Offenses

Sanctions that may be imposed by Middle Georgia State University for violators of this Policy include the following or any combination thereof: Reprimand; Restrictions; Probation; Suspension; Forced withdrawal or expulsion; Referral; Monetary fine               

 Legal Sanctions – Alcohol Offenses

Common Alcohol Offenses                                  Typical Penalty – First Offense

Possession of or attempt to purchase alcohol by a person under 21 years of age

$300 fine, up to three years probation, 20 hours of community service, up to 6 months in jail

DUI

1st offense: $750 - $1,000 fine, 40 hours community service, jail 10 days to 12 months (all except 24 hours of jail time may be suspended or probated)

Over age 21: driver’s license suspended for one year, may get limited driving permit (go to work and school) after DUI school in 120 days

Under age 21: license revoked 6-12 months depending on blood alcohol level, no limited driving permit issued

Using a false driver’s license, ID, or allowing someone to use your driver’s license or ID

$100 - $200 fine, 12 months probation, up to 12 months in jail

Providing alcohol to a person under age 21

$1,000 fine, 12 months probation, up to 12 months in jail

 

Legal Sanctions – Illicit Drug Offenses

Common Drug Offenses                                             Typical Penalty – First Offense

Purchase/Possession of controlled substance

Felony: $1,000 fine, 2 to 15 years in jail

Trafficking controlled substance (not marijuana)

Felony: $100,000 to $1 million fine, 5 to 15 years in jail

Possession of 1 ounce or less marijuana

Misdemeanor: Fine up to $1,000; 12 months jail

Possession of more than 1 ounce marijuana

Felony: 1 – 10 years jail

Trafficking marijuana

Felony: Fines from $100,000 to $1,000,000; 5 to 15 years jail or probation

Trafficking marijuana to minor

Felony: Fine up to $250,000; 2 to 20 years in jail

 

Eligibility for Federal Financial Aid

Higher Education Act Amendment (October 1998) Section 484

Section 484, Student Eligibility, is amended to authorize the suspension of a student’s federal loan eligibility if he or she has been convicted of a drug-related offense. The section states that a student who has been convicted of any offense under any federal or state law involving the possession or sale of a controlled substance shall not be eligible to receive any grant, loan, or work assistance under this title during the period beginning on the date of such conviction and ending after the interval specified in the following table:

 Student Ineligibility for Grants, Loans, or Work Assistance

For possession of a controlled substance, ineligibility period is:

First Conviction             1 year

Second Conviction         2 years

Third Conviction          Indefinite

For sale of a controlled substance, ineligibility period is:

First Conviction           2 years

Second Conviction       Indefinite