Drug and Alcohol Awareness Policy

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     ANNUAL DRUG-FREE WORKPLACE AND CAMPUSES NOTIFICATION 

     

    Drug and alcohol use and misuse are problems at many university and college campuses across the country. Prince George’s Community College takes this issue seriously and has a clearly‐defined set of policies regarding the use and distribution of alcohol and drugs on campus.

    This annual notice is being provided to you as required by the Drug-Free Workplace Act of 1988 and the Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act Amendments of 1989.  Institutions of higher education that receive federal/state funds in any form are required to comply with the above Acts.  In compliance with the law, the student policy can be found in the current on-line versions of the Student Handbook.  The employee policy can be found in the current on-line and hard copy versions of the Employee Handbook .  

    Students who have questions regarding the annual notice or wish to receive further information on the Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act or the Drug-Free Workplace Act should contact the Wellness Center (301) 546-0845.  Faculty and staff should contact Human Resources and Organizational Development at HROD@pgcc.edu  

    Statement of Policy

    The Board of Trustees is committed to providing a drug-free workplace and campus for its employees and students in accordance with the Drug Free Workplace Act of 1988 and the Safe and Drug Free Schools and Communities Act of 1994.

    Disciplinary Sanctions

    Consistent with federal, state and local law, Prince George’s Community College will impose disciplinary sanctions upon students and employees who violate this policy. Violations of the federal, state and local laws and ordinances governing drug and alcohol abuse by employees or students may result in referral for criminal prosecution. Legal sanctions, including fines and/or imprisonment, may be imposed by the courts. Students in violation of the policy may be required by the Prince George’s Community College to receive treatment, or to be suspended or expelled. Faculty and staff in violation of this policy may be required to receive treatment. The Prince George’s Community College may exercise disciplinary actions against faculty and staff in violation of the policy, up to and including termination.

    Legal Sanctions

    Some drug/alcohol offenses are misdemeanors while others are felonies. In either case, the sentence may include imprisonment. Convictions for the unauthorized manufacture, delivery, trafficking and possession of a controlled dangerous substance varies.  Penalties for conviction under Maryland Criminal Article 5-602 may vary based on the type of controlled dangerous substances in question, the quantities involved, whether or not a person is charged with possession and intent to distribute or actual distribution, and prior convictions, as well as additional charges related to possession of drug paraphernalia.

    For example, possession and intent to distribute cocaine, crack, ecstasy, GHB, heroin, LSD, methamphetamine, and some prescription drugs is considered a felony and could result in fines of no more than $25,000 and incarceration of no more than 20 years in jail. For all other drugs, however, penalties could be limited to fines of no more than $15,000 and incarceration of no more than five years in jail (for a first offense).

    The same possible penalties apply to conviction for actual distribution of controlled dangerous substances, as well as conviction for manufacturing controlled dangerous substances (which includes not only distribution of controlled dangerous substances, but also possessing, distributing, or creating a machine, instrument, or device, or a combination of these items, that is capable of producing a controlled dangerous substance).

    In concurrence with charges under Maryland Criminal Article 5-602, a person may face charges under Maryland Article 5-619, which relates to drug paraphernalia, including any equipment, products, or materials associated with using or manufacturing a controlled dangerous substance

    Educational Impact

    Certain academic programs require regular drug and alcohol screenings. For academic programs that require clinical or practicum field work, and/or that require a student’s eligibility to sit for a licensure exam, regular and random drug and alcohol screening is required.  In addition, the use, sale, or distribution of drugs and alcohol, including the conviction of certain criminal offenses related to illicit drug and alcohol intoxication, may limit or adversely affect a student’s ability to enter into and/or to continue in an academic program at Prince George’s Community College. Such limitation could be a further detriment to a student’s future pursuit of advanced academic credentials at external colleges, universities, and professional programs.

    Health Risks Associated with Illicit Drugs and Alcohol Abuse

    It is important to understand the extent of the health risks associated with alcohol and drug abuse. To assist our students and staff in regard to substance abuse, we provide the accompanying chart identifying selected substances with companion information about physical effects and dangers. 

     

    Illegal substances, drugs, alcohol

    Physical effects/symptoms

    Dangers

    Alcohol

    Absorbed directly into bloodstream, enters every organ of the body and depresses the central nervous system;   results in intoxication, dizziness, slurred speech, unsteady walk, relaxation, relaxed inhibitions, impaired coordination and slowed reflexes.

    Addiction: accidents, impaired ability, coordination and judgment; memory loss; vision disturbance; reduced ability to concentrate; heart and liver damage; nausea; vomiting; other physical damage; and death.

    Cocaine (AKA: Crack)

    Decreased appetite, increased heart rate/temperature/blood pressure, slowed breathing, brief intense euphoria, restlessness, excitement, and a feeling of well-being followed by depression.

    Addiction: heart failure, ulcers in nose, seizures, lung damage, severe depression and sudden death.

    Marijuana/Cannabis

    Altered perceptions, increased heart rate, high blood pressure, reduced fertility, red eyes, dry mouth, reduced concentration and coordination, euphoria, laughing and hunger.

    Panic reaction, impaired short-term memory, addiction, lack of motivation, anxiety/panic, impaired coordination and lung damage.

    Hallucinogens

    (AKA: Acid, angel dust, buttons, cactus, hog, killer weed, magic mushrooms, microdot, PCP, LSD, red dragon, sugar cubes, white lightning)

    Altered mood and perception, focus on details, anxiety, panic, nausea, synesthesia (ex. smell colors, see sounds),   illusions, hallucinations, dilated pupils, elevated body temperature, and sleeplessness; repeated heavy use can   lead to increased heart rate/blood pressure.

    Unpredictable behavior, emotional instability, convulsions, coma, heart/lung failure, inability to feel pain, disorientation, flashbacks, ruptured blood vessels in the brain, tremors, violent behavior (with PCP), can cause the appearance of schizophrenic-like psychosis.

    Inhalants

    (AKA: Aerosol sprays, bolt, climax, huff, laughing gas, locker room, poppers, snappers, solvents, whippets)

    Nausea, dizziness, headache, lack of coordination and control, rapid pulse, loss of appetite and involuntary   passing of urine or feces.

    Unconscious, suffocation, nausea and vomiting, permanent damage to brain and central nervous system, hepatitis or brain damage, electrolyte imbalance and muscle fatigue, violent behavior, suffocation and sudden death.

    Narcotics

    (AKA: Big H, Opium, Heroin, Hydrocodone, Oxycodone, Buprenorphine,Tramadol, Fentanyl, OxyContin, Hydrocodone: Vicodin, Lorcet, Lortab, Codeine

    Morphine

    Methadone

    Euphoria, drowsiness, insensitivity to pain, nausea, vomiting, watery eyes, runny nose, slow shallow breathing, clammy skin and convulsions.

    Addiction, lethargy, weight loss, contamination from utensils (hepatitis, AIDS), accidental overdose, coma, death, premature or stillborn infants and severe withdrawal.

    Stimulants other than cocaine

    (AKA: Black beauties, crank, crystal meth, diet pills, ice, pep pills, speed, uppers)

    Alertness, talkativeness, wakefulness, increased heart rate/blood pressure, loss of appetite, rapid breathing, headache, dizziness, dilated pupils, heavy sweating and shaky hands; repeated use can lead to brain damage/ulcers/malnutrition.

    Fatigue leading to exhaustion, addiction, paranoia, depression, confusion, possibly hallucinations, anxiety/panic and violent behavior.

    Benzodiazepines (AKA: alprazolam (Xanax, Xanax XR) clonazepam Klonopin) chlordiazepoxide (Librium) diazepam (Valium) lorazepam (Ativan)

    Depressed breathing, slow heartbeat, intoxication, drowsiness and uncoordinated movements

    Possible overdose (combination with alcohol can multiply the effect), muscle rigidity and addiction; withdrawal and   overdose require medical treatment; high doses can result in coma and death.

     

    Treatment and Rehabilitative Services

    Students or employees who are having difficulty with drug or alcohol use are urged to seek a confidential assessment from the Prince George’s Community College Employee Relations or the Wellness Center. Based upon the assessment, Employee Relations or a Wellness Center counselor can provide referrals and linkage to Employee Assistance Program, treatment services at community-based agencies or within certain health insurance networks. Anyone who is aware of others (either students, faculty or staff) with possible drug or alcohol abuse problems should also seek guidance from Employee Relations or the Wellness Center to facilitate a referral to the Employee Assistance Program, Wellness Centers or an off-campus provider. Additional information regarding the Employee Assistance Program and Wellness Center at the College can be found online at: EAP and Wellness Center.

     
     
     Prevention and Education

    Prince George’s Community College will institute and maintain a drug   awareness program to inform employees and students about:

    •  the dangers of drug and alcohol abuse 
    •  the college’s policy of maintaining a drug and alcohol-free learning and working environment- Drug Free WorkplacePolicy