Revisions Adopted by President’s Cabinet 5/22/2018
Revisions adopted by President’s Cabinet 10/17/17
Revisions adopted by President Cabinet 9/22/15
Revisions adopted by President’s Cabinet 4/28/15
Originally adopted by President’s Cabinet 12/17/13

The abuse of alcohol and illegal drugs by members of the East Georgia State College community are incompatible with the goals of the institution. In order to further the College’s commitment to provide a healthy and productive educational environment and workplace, and in compliance with the Drug Free Schools and Communities Act Amendments of 1989 and the Drug Free Workplace Act of 1988, the College has established the following policy on alcohol and other drugs for its employees. A copy of the Student Alcohol and Other Drug Prevention Policy can be found in the East Georgia State College Student Handbook.

I. Policy Statement:

The possession, use, consumption, distribution, manufacture or sale of alcoholic beverages, illegal or dangerous drugs on USG property where EGSC currently carries out its programs, or at institutionally approved off campus events is prohibited. Georgia law prohibits the possession or consumption of alcoholic beverages by those under the legal drinking age and prohibits making alcoholic beverages available to persons under the legal drinking age. Employees are prohibited from permitting alcohol and/or drug use or consumption by students under age 21 at events hosted or attended by the employee. This prohibition applies to on campus and off campus venues, regardless of whether the activity or event is sponsored by the college. Exceptions to the alcohol consumption prohibition may be made for external groups utilizing College facilities as expressly provided in the East Georgia State College Facilities Usage Scheduling and Fee Policy.

In further support of campus wide safety and to enforce EGSC’s Drug Free School Zone, EGSC Campus Police will utilize trained canine officers to conduct periodic patrols of the EGSC -Swainsboro campus. The patrol may include all buildings and parking lots. The canine officers are provided as a courtesy from neighboring police departments and will be accompanied by their respective police officer handlers.

Drug Free Workplace Statement

East Georgia State College has a clear responsibility to students, parents, and employees to provide the very best academic atmosphere for the students and a drug free working environment for all employees. Any element which may hinder the efforts to carry out these responsibilities cannot be tolerated. Employees involved with drugs hinder the College’s effort to carry out these responsibilities and will not be tolerated.

    1. Pre-Employment Drug Screening of Applicants and Drug/Alcohol Testing of Employees
      East Georgia State College has a vital interest in providing a safe environment for its students, employees, faculty and visitors. Drug and alcohol abuse is a serious health problem, which can endanger the college and the safety of those who work and learn at the college or seek its services. It is the intent and goal of this policy to provide a supportive process for intervention and rehabilitation while also protecting the working and learning environment. Employees in “high-risk” jobs shall be subject to pre-employment, reasonable suspicion, post-accident and random alcohol and drug testing for evidence of use of illegal drugs. For purposes of this policy, a high risk position is defined as one in which inattention to duty or errors in judgment can result in harm to employees or others. High risks positions identified by EGSC as safety sensitive include, but are not limited to, Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST) certified law enforcement positions, transportation positions requiring a CDL, and plant operations positions.

      Any affected employee may be required to submit to alcohol and drug testing when their supervisor has reasonable suspicion to believe that the employee is under the influence of alcohol and/or illegal drugs. Additionally, an employee who has notified his/her supervisor that he/she has a drug related problem and is maintaining employment under the Board of Regents Voluntary Disclosure of Drug Use Policy, shall be subject to random drug testing.

      Current employees are subject to drug and alcohol testing under the following conditions: when applying for transfer to a high risk position, upon reasonable suspicion, and when random testing is warranted due to an employee’s high risk position or for a set period of time defined by the college for an employee returning to work following treatment under this policy. All current employees in the above categories, except recently returned to work employees subject to random testing, that have a positive alcohol or drug test as defined in this policy, will be immediately suspended from employment and required to complete a drug and alcohol assessment and treatment plan and be cleared by the medical provider before he/she can be eligible to return to work. An investigation will be conducted to determine whether other college policies were violated, injuries to coworkers or others, and damage to college property. The college may take disciplinary action against an employee, including termination, in lieu of the above treatment option, based on the investigative findings. Employees that are recently returned to work and subject to random drug testing that have a positive drug or alcohol test will be terminated.
    2. Voluntary Disclosure of Drug Use Prior to Arrest
      If, prior to arrest for an offense involving a controlled substance, marijuana, or a dangerous drug, an employee notifies his or her immediate supervisor that he or she illegally uses a controlled substance, marijuana, or a dangerous drug and is receiving or agrees to receive treatment under a drug abuse and education program approved by the institution president, such employee shall not have his or her employment terminated by the institution on account of the drug use that was voluntarily disclosed for up to one (1) year from disclosure as long as the employee follows the treatment plan. Retention of such employee shall be conditioned upon satisfactory completion of the program. In addition, this policy does not prohibit the College from taking appropriate disciplinary actions for violation of other policies and procedures of the College or Board of Regents.

      The employee’s work activities may be restructured if it is deemed advisable in the opinion of the employee’s immediate supervisor in consultation with Human Resource or the President. The rights herein granted shall be available to a System employee only once during a five year period and shall not apply to any employee who has refused to be tested or who has tested positive for use of a controlled substance, marijuana, or a dangerous drug. An employee retained under the provisions of this policy will be subject to return to work and random selection for controlled substances testing for no less than a year.
    3. Employee Duty to Report Arrests and Convictions of all Offenses
      Any current employee charged with a crime, other than a minor traffic offense, including alcohol and other drug offenses, shall report being charged with such crime to the Office of Human Resources within 72 hours of the employee becoming aware of such charge. Minor traffic offenses are those which do not involve driving while under the influence of alcohol or other drugs, which did not result in imprisonment and for which a fine of less than $250 was imposed.

      Failure to report being charged with such a crime may result in appropriate disciplinary action, including termination of employment. The Office of Human Resources shall review the nature of the crime and make a determination on what, if any, action should be taken regarding the employee’s employment status until resolution of the charge.

      Any current employee who is convicted of a crime (other than a minor traffic offense*), including alcohol and other drug offenses, shall report such conviction to the Office of Human Resources within 24 hours of the conviction. Failure to report such conviction may result in appropriate disciplinary action, including termination of employment. The Employment Background Investigation Committee shall review the nature of the crime and make a determination on what, if any, action should be taken regarding the employee’s employment status. The Committee shall review the conviction utilizing the same standards it applies when reviewing convictions of candidates for employment, but may consider other factors, including, but not limited to, the length of employment and performance reviews.

II. Institutional Sanctions

Employees in violation of this policy will be subject to appropriate disciplinary sanctions including, but not limited to dismissal, demotion or suspension of employment and /or referral to the appropriate state agency for legal prosecution.

Any employee who is convicted for the first time, under the laws of any state or the United States, of any criminal offense involving the manufacture, distribution, sale or possession of a controlled substance, marijuana or a dangerous drug, shall be subject to, at a minimum, suspension from employment or other disciplinary sanctions up to and including dismissal of employment. The employee may appeal the suspension or dismissal under procedures set forth in the East Georgia State College Employee Grievance Policy. In the case of suspension, such employee shall be required, as a condition of completion of suspension, to complete a drug treatment and education program approved by the President. Upon a second conviction, such employee shall be terminated and is ineligible for any state employment for a period of five (5) years.

Any employee convicted of a Driving While Intoxicated, Driving under the Influence and/or refusing to take a chemical test for intoxication is a “disqualified driver” and is ineligible to operate personal vehicles for college business and college fleet vehicles under the East Georgia State College Fleet Management and Motor Vehicle Policy until further review. Upon review, an employee may be required to complete driver training and/or a temporary suspension of driving privileges imposed before the business driving privilege can be reinstated. It is also possible that a permanent suspension of driving personal or fleet vehicles on college business privileges is imposed.

III. Civil Penalties

In addition to the criminal sanctions described below, employees convicted of drug-related offenses are subject to civil penalties which may include suspension or revocation of professional and occupational licenses, restriction from state employment for up to five years, denial of retirement benefits, and denial of workers compensation insurance where alcohol or other drugs are the cause of injury.

IV. Criminal Sanctions:

Under Georgia and federal law, it is a crime to possess, manufacture, sell, or distribute illegal drugs. See charts detailing federal penalties for marijuana trafficking, federal penalties for drug trafficking, and the state drug law summaries. In Georgia, first offenders and youthful offenders convicted of lesser drug offenses may be referred to treatment centers. The specific sentence received by an offender depends on a variety of factors and the stated information is merely a guide. The Georgia legislature may amend the stated sanctions at any time.

Federal sanctions for the illegal possession of drugs include imprisonment up to 1 year and/or a minimum fine of $1,000 for a first conviction; imprisonment for 15 days-2 years and a minimum fine of $2,500 for a second drug conviction; and imprisonment for 90 days-3 years and a minimum fine of $5,000 for a third or subsequent drug conviction. For possession of a mixture or substance which contains a cocaine base, federal sanctions include 5-20 years in prison and a minimum fine of $1,000, for a first conviction if the mixture or substance exceeds 5 grams, for a second conviction if the mixture or substance exceeds 3 grams, and for a third or subsequent conviction if the mixture or substance exceeds 1 gram. Additional possible penalties for the illegal possession of drugs are forfeiture of real or personal property used to possess or to facilitate possession of a controlled substance if the offense is punishable by more than 1 year imprisonment; forfeiture of vehicles, boats, aircraft, or any other conveyance used, or intended for use, to transport or conceal drugs; civil fine up to $10,000 per violation; denial of federal benefits, such as student loans, grants, contracts, and professional and commercial licenses for up to 1 year for a first and up to 5 years for a second or subsequent offense; successful completion of a drug treatment program; community service; and ineligibility to receive or purchase a firearm.

Georgia law prohibits the purchase or possession of alcohol by a person under the age of 21, or the furnishing of alcohol to such a person. Driving under the influence of alcohol or other drugs also is illegal. It is against Georgia law, under certain circumstances, to walk or be upon a roadway while under the influence of alcohol or other drugs. The punishment for these offenses may include imprisonment, payment of a fine, mandatory treatment and education programs, community service, and mandatory loss of one’s driver’s license.

V. Health Risks of Alcohol and Drugs.

The following information is from http://cths.umhb.edu/health-risks-alcoholand-drugs

Alcohol. Health hazards associated with the excessive use of alcohol or with alcohol dependency include dramatic behavioral changes, retardation of motor skills, and impairment of reasoning and rational thinking. These factors result in a higher incidence of accidents and accidental death for such persons compared to nonusers of alcohol. Nutrition also suffers and vitamin and mineral deficiencies are frequent. Prolonged alcohol abuse can cause any or all of the following: bleeding from the intestinal tract, damage to nerves and the brain, impotence, psychotic behavior, loss of memory and coordination, damage to the liver often resulting in cirrhosis, severe inflammation of the pancreas, and damage to the bone marrow, heart, testes, ovaries and muscles. Damage to the nerves and organs is usually irreversible. Cancer is the second leading cause of death in alcoholics and is 10 times more frequent than in non-alcoholics. Sudden withdrawal of alcohol from persons dependent on it will cause serious physical withdrawal symptoms. Drinking during pregnancy can cause fetal alcohol syndrome. Overdoses of alcohol can result in respiratory arrest and death.

Drugs. The use of illicit drugs usually causes the same general types of physiological and mental changes as alcohol, though frequently those changes are more severe and more sudden. Death or coma resulting from overdose of drugs is more frequent than from alcohol.

Cocaine. Cocaine is a stimulant that is most commonly inhaled as a powder. It can be dissolved in water and used intravenously. The cocaine extract (crack) is smoked. Users can progress from infrequent use to dependence within a few weeks or months. Psychological and behavioral changes which can result from use include over-stimulation, hallucinations, irritability, sexual dysfunction, psychotic behavior, social isolation, and memory problems. An overdose produces convulsions and delirium and may result in death from cardiac arrest. Cocaine dependency requires considerable assistance, close supervision and treatment.

Amphetamines. Patterns of use and associated effects are similar to cocaine. Severe intoxication may produce confusion, rambling or incoherent speech, anxiety, psychotic behavior, ringing in the ears, and hallucinations. Intense fatigue and depression resulting from use can lead to severe depression. Large doses may result in convulsions and death from cardiac or respiratory arrest.

MDA and MDMA (XTC, ecstasy). These amphetamine-based hallucinogens are sold in powder, tablet, or capsule form and can be inhaled, injected, or swallowed. They cause similar, but usually milder, hallucinogenic effects than those of LSD. Because they are amphetamines, tolerance can develop quickly and overdose can happen. Exhaustion and possible liver damage can occur with heavy use. In high doses, these drugs can cause anxiety, paranoia and delusions. While rare, these drugs have been associated with deaths in users with known or previously undiagnosed heart conditions.

Rhohypnol (rophies, roofies, rope). This drug is in the same category of drugs as Valium, a benzodiazepine, but is more potent than Valium. Initially, it causes a sense of relaxation and a reduction of anxiety. At higher doses, light-headedness, dizziness, lack of coordination and slurred speech occur. The drug affects memory and, in higher doses or if mixed with other drugs or alcohol, can result in amnesia for the time period the user is under the influence. Because of this amnesia effect, Rhohypnol has been given intentionally to others to facilitate sexual assault and other crimes. Combining this drug with other sedating drugs, including alcohol, will increase the intensity of all effects of the drug and, in sufficient doses, can cause respiratory arrest and death. Dependency can occur.

Heroin and other opiates. Addiction and dependence can develop rapidly. Use is characterized by impaired judgment, slurred speech, and drowsiness. Overdose is manifested by coma, shock, and depressed respiration, with the possibility of death from respiratory arrest. Withdrawal problems include sweating, diarrhea, fever, insomnia, irritability, nausea, vomiting, and muscle and joint pains.

Hallucinogens or psychedelics. These include LSD, mescaline, peyote, and phencyclidine or PCP. Use impairs and distorts one’s perception of surroundings, causes mood changes, and results in visual hallucinations that involve geometric forms, colors, persons, or objects.

Solvent inhalants (e.g., glue, lacquers, plastic cement). Fumes from these substances cause problems similar to alcohol. Incidents of hallucinations and permanent brain damage are more frequent with chronic use.

Marijuana (Cannabis). Marijuana is usually ingested by smoking. Smoking marijuana causes disconnected ideas, alteration of depth perception and sense of time, impaired judgment and impaired coordination. Prolonged use can lead to psychological dependence.

Damage from intravenous drug use. In addition to the adverse effects associated with the use of a specific drug, intravenous drug users who use unsterilized needles or who share needles with other drug users can develop HIV, hepatitis, tetanus (lock jaw), and infections in the heart. Permanent damage or death can result.

Synthetic cannabis (K2 and Spice). This is a psychoactive designer drug derived of natural herbs sprayed with synthetic chemicals that, when consumed, allegedly mimic the effects of cannabis. Synthetic cannabis can precipitate psychosis and in some cases it is prolonged. These studies suggest that synthetic cannabinoid intoxication is associated with acute psychosis, worsening of previously stable psychotic disorders, and also may have the ability to trigger a chronic (longterm) psychotic disorder among vulnerable individuals such as those with a family history of mental illness.

Bath Salts (Brand names include Blizzard, Blue Silk, Charge+, Ivory Snow, Ivory Wave, Ocean Burst, Pure Ivory, Purple Wave, Snow Leopard, Stardust, Vanilla Sky, White Dove, White Knight and White Lightning). Bath salts are a dangerous drug whose full risks and effects are still unknown. Doctors have reported that bath salts can cause rapid heartbeat, high blood pressure, chest pains, agitation, hallucinations, extreme paranoia and delusions. Long-term effects are believed to be similar to methamphetamine (meth). Taking a lot of it for a long time can lead to emotional and physical "crash-like" feelings of depression, anxiety and intense cravings for more of the drug. Since it contains amphetamine-like chemicals, bath salts will always carry the risk of stroke, heart attack and sudden death.

VI. Counseling and Treatment Resources: Substance Abuse Services Available in Area

    1.  Out-Patient Facilities
      For outpatient substance abuse services, the individual should contact Ogeechee Behavioral Health Services (located at 223 North Anderson Drive in Swainsboro, Georgia) 478-289-2530 for an appointment. Ogeechee Behavioral Health Services provides outpatient services such as alcohol and drug assessments as well as counseling services.
    2. In-patient facilities-
      Serenity Behavioral Health Systems (located in Augusta, Georgia)- (888) 629-3330- Provides dual diagnosis drug rehabilitation with a primary focus on mental health services and drug rehabilitation.
      Quentin Price (located in Dublin, Georgia)- (800) 868-5423 or (800) 868-5423- This facility provides detoxification services. The treatment center provides short-term residential treatment.
      John’s Place Crisis Stabilization Unit (located in Statesboro, Georgia)- (912) 764-6129 or (800) 746-3526. This facility provides short-term intensive services for individuals in need of more intensive and structured residential services.
      Braswell House- (located in Swainsboro, Georgia) (478) 289-2486. This is an addictive disease semiindependent residential program. Individuals entering this program are referred by in-patient crisis stabilization units. This program offers a safe, stable, drug free residence to ten co-ed individuals for a minimum of 30 days. Individuals without a safe and sober home environment to return to are often good candidates for this program.

VII. Referral Sources for Employees Health Insurance and Health Providers:

Blue Cross Blue Shield of GA participants can obtain info/referrals from 800-424-8950. Blue Cross Blue Shield providers can be located at www.bcbsga.com/bor

VII. Employee Assistance Program:

The University System of Georgia (USG) provides a comprehensive employee assistance program (EAP) for its employees and their families. The services are available 24/7, are confidential and are no cost to the employee. The EAP staff and counselors include psychologists, clinical social workers, marriage and family counselors, alcohol and drug counselors, attorneys, financial advisors and other professionals. For more information about the EAP visit the USG website: http://www.usg.edu/hr/benefits. The EAP is offered through Espyr, an independent firm. For more information visit www.espyr.com and enter password USGCARES or call 888-960-3305.

IX. Employee Training –

The Office of Human Resources provides training to all faculty and staff upon hire and on an annual basis. This training includes an annual distribution of the policy.