Memo to: All UH-Downtown/PS Holders UH-Downtown/PS 01.A.05
Issue No. 2
From: William Flores, President Effective date: 02/02/10
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Subject: Drug and Alcohol Abuse Policy
This PS establishes the University of Houston-Downtown's guidelines for the enforcement of
a drug and alcohol abuse policy.
2.1 Drug Free Workplace Act of 1988: A federal statute relating to drug abuse policies that
requires all employers with federal contracts at least equal to $25,000 to certify, as a
condition of receiving a federal contract, that the employer will provide and maintain a
drug-free workplace. A recipient of a federal grant must certify that the employer will
provide and maintain a drug-free workplace. This act also requires federal contractors
and grantees to publish and distribute a policy statement stating the prohibitions against
the unlawful manufacture, distribution, dispensation, possession, or use of controlled
substances in the workplace. An ongoing drug-free awareness program must be
established warning employees of the dangers of drug abuse.
2.2 Drug Free Schools and Communities Act of 1989: A federal statute that requires, as a
condition of receiving funds or any other form of financial assistance under any federal
program, an institution of higher education must certify that it has adopted and
implemented a program to prevent the unlawful possession, use, or distribution of illicit
drugs and alcohol by students and employees.
2.3 Employee: An individual receiving a salary, wages, other compensation, and/or stipend
support from the university.
2.4 Employee Assistance Program (EAP): A service, plan, or set of benefits provided by an
employer that includes counseling for personal or family problems, including mental
health, substance abuse, gambling addiction, marital problems, parenting problems,
emotional problems, or financial pressures, and may also provide legal and financial
2.5 Illicit drug use: The use of an illegal drug substance or abuse of other drugs and
2.6 Student: An individual registered or enrolled for credit or non-credit in a course or
program offered by the University of Houston-Downtown.
2.7 Student Employee Assistance Program (SAP): A service, plan or set of benefits
provided by a university or school that includes counseling for personal or family
problems, including mental health, substance abuse, gambling addiction, marital
problems, parenting problems, emotional problems, or financial pressures, and may
also provide legal and financial planning.
2.8 University activities: Activities officially sponsored by the University of Houston-
2.9 Workplace: The physical boundaries of the university and facilities owned or controlled
by the university.
3.1 The unlawful use, manufacture, sale, distribution, dispensation, or possession of any
illicit drug, including alcohol, in the workplace, on campus, or as part of any campus
activities is strictly prohibited. PS 01.A.14, Use of Alcoholic Beverages at the
University of Houston-Downtown, outlines the regulations for the service, consumption
and distribution of alcoholic beverages on campus.
3.2 Any employee engaged in the unlawful possession, use, or distribution of illicit drugs
or alcohol on campus or at campus-sponsored events held off-campus will be subject to
disciplinary action up to and including written reprimand, suspension without pay, or
termination, depending on the severity of the infraction as outlined in the Discipline
and Dismissal of Regular Staff Employees policy, PS 02.B.03, and may be referred to
a drug and alcohol rehabilitation program, if deemed necessary. Employees referred for
assistance must satisfactorily participate in a drug and alcohol abuse rehabilitation
program, as agreed upon between the employee, Employment Services and Operations
and the Employee Assistance Program (EAP) staff.
3.3 Any student having violated UHD’s Student Rights and Responsibilities policy, PS
04.A.01, regarding the unlawful possession, use or distribution of illicit drugs and
alcohol on campus or at campus-sponsored events held off-campus will be subject to
disciplinary action and referral to a drug and alcohol rehabilitation program, if deemed
necessary. The Discipline Officer in the Division of Student Services/Enrollment
Management will enforce the disciplinary measures, as outlined in PS 04.A.01.
Students referred for assistance must satisfactorily participate in a drug and alcohol
abuse program, as agreed upon between the student, UHD Discipline Officer, and the
Student Assistance Program (SAP) staff.
3.4 An employee working on a federal contract or grant must notify his/her supervisor and
Employment Services and Operations, within five (5) calendar days, if he or she is
convicted of any criminal drug violation in the workplace.
3.5 The university will notify the appropriate contracting or granting agency within ten (10)
days after receiving notice that a covered employee has been convicted of a criminal
drug violation in the workplace.
4.1 Each student will receive a copy of the Drug and Alcohol Abuse Prevention Policy, PS
01.A.05, and the Drug and Alcohol Prevention Statement through the distribution of the
Student Handbook, orientation, the UHD website, and/or information kiosks located on
campus. The policy will be distributed by email to all students on an annual basis.
4.2 All new employees will be issued a copy of the Drug and Alcohol Abuse Policy, PS
01.A.05, and the Drug and Alcohol Prevention Statement upon employment with the
4.3 The Drug and Alcohol Abuse Policy, PS 01.A.05, and the Drug and Alcohol Prevention
Statement (Exhibit A) will be distributed by email to all employees on an annual basis.
4.4 The Staff Handbook will include information on the Drug and Alcohol Abuse Policy,
and is available on the UHD website. All staff are required to sign a Statement of
Acknowledgement acknowledging that they have read and understood the Staff
4.5 This policy will be disseminated to faculty, staff and students when significant changes
in the policy occur.
4.6 The university will provide information to faculty, staff and students about prevention,
counseling and treatment of drug and alcohol problems through seminars and
4.7 A biennial review and report of the Drug and Alcohol Abuse Policy and the Drug and
Alcohol Prevention Statement will be conducted to assess the effectiveness of the policy
and the prevention statement.
Exhibit A: University of Houston-Downtown Drug and Alcohol Prevention Statement
6. REVIEW PROCESS
Responsible Party (Reviewer): President
Review: Every two years on or before May 1st.
Signed original on file in Employment Services and Operations.
7. POLICY HISTORY
Issue #1: 04/08/94
Drug Free Workplace Act of 1988
Drug Free Schools and Communities Act of 1989
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UNIVERSITY OF HOUSTON-DOWNTOWN
DRUG AND ALCOHOL ABUSE PREVENTION STATEMENT
1. National Collegiate Drug Definitions
The following terms are important for purposes of expressing the campus policy on a drug
a. Controlled Substance: A controlled substance in schedules I through V of section 202 of
the Controlled Substances Act (21 U.S.C. 812), as further defined by regulations at 21
CFR 1300.11 through 1300.15, and as defined in the Texas Controlled Substances Act
[Texas Health and Safety Code. § 481.001 et seq.];
b. Contract: A legal instrument reflecting a relationship between the federal government and
a recipient whenever the principal purpose of the instrument is the acquisition by
purchase, lease, or barter, of property or services for the direct benefit or use of the
federal government; or whenever an executive agency determines in a specific instance
that the use of a type of procurement contract is appropriate;
c. Conviction: Finding of guilt (including a plea of nolo contendere) or imposition of
sentence, or both, by any judicial body charged with the responsibility to determine
violations of the federal or state criminal drug statutes;
d. Criminal drug statute: A federal or non-federal criminal statute involving the
manufacture, sale, distribution, dispensation, use, or possession of any controlled
e. Employee: An individual receiving a salary, wages, other compensation and/or stipend
support from the university.
f. Federal agency or agency: Any United States executive department, military department,
government corporation, government controlled corporation, or any other establishment
in the executive branch (including the Executive Office of the President), or any
independent regulatory agency.
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g. Grant: An award of financial assistance, including a cooperative agreement, in the form
of money, or property in lieu of money, by a federal agency directly to a grantee. The
term grant includes block grant and entitlement grant programs, whether or not exempted
from coverage under the grants management government wide regulation ("Uniform
Administrative Requirements for Grants and Cooperative Agreements to State and Local
Governments"). The term does not include technical assistance which provides services
instead of money, or other assistance in the form of loans, loan guarantees, interest
subsidies, insurance, or direct appropriations; or any veterans' benefits to individuals, i.e.,
any benefit to veterans, their families, or survivors by virtue of the service of a veteran in
the Armed Forces of the United States.
h. Grantee: A legal entity which applies for or receives a grant or contract directly from a
i. Illicit drug use: The use of an illegal drug substance, and the abuse of other drugs and
j. Nolo contendere - A Latin phrase meaning "I will not contest it." A plea in a criminal
case which does not require the defendant to admit guilt, but the defendant does not
contest the facts on which the charge is based. Some judges refuse to accept such pleas in
k. Student: An individual registered or enrolled for credit or non-credit in a course or
program offered by UHD or any of its units.
l. University activities: An activity officially sponsored by UHD.
2. The Dangers of Drug or Alcohol Abuse in the Workplace and on Campus
There are millions of employed individuals whose job performance and productivity are
adversely affected by their progressive dependence on drugs or alcohol. As many as 20% of
all college students use chemical substances and drugs at a level of concern to themselves
and others. Some estimate that 70% of the working population and 90% of college students
consume mood-altering chemicals of some type. The cost to the United States economy is
estimated to be more than 26 billion dollars per year.
3. Health Risks
The abuse of drugs or alcohol in the workplace can lead to a variety of serious consequences
including: poor decision making; poor morale; work errors; wasted time and materials;
damage to equipment; theft; tardiness; absenteeism; accidents which injure the drug abuser;
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accidents which put all employees and students at risk of injury and may lead to drug abuser
disciplinary action, prosecution, illness, and even death. Abusers of these substances
experience depression, isolation, loss of memory, loss of coordination, impaired judgment,
reduced morale, anxiety, paranoia and loss of self respect.
The unlawful use of drugs and alcohol is inconsistent with the behavior expected of members
of a university community. The University of Houston-Downtown (UHD) is committed to
development and maintenance of a drug free environment on the campus as well as an
environment that prohibits the abuse of other drugs and alcohol. A drug and alcohol abuse
prevention program is in operation and accessible to all members of the campus community.
The campus is committed to the further expansion of that program and the dissemination of
drug awareness information to the members of the campus community. In addition, the
campus is committed to enforcing the provisions of the Drug Free Workplace Act of 1988
and the Drug Free School and Communities Act of 1989 and believes that these acts and their
implementation regulations provide a proper framework for the drug and alcohol abuse
policies of the campus.
The unlawful use, manufacture, sale, distribution, dispensation, or possession of any illicit
drug, including alcohol, in the workplace, on campus, or as part of any campus activities is
strictly prohibited. PS 01.A.14, Use of Alcoholic Beverages at the University of Houston-
Downtown, outlines the regulations for the service, consumption and distribution of alcoholic
beverages on campus.
6. Penalties for Violation of Policy
The Drug and Alcohol Abuse Prevention Policy is a protection and support for the employees
and students of UHD. Any employee or student seeking assistance through the services
offered by the university Employee Assistance Program (EAP) or Student Assistance
Program (SAP) will be treated in a confidential manner. However, being in treatment does
not shield either the employee or student from disciplinary action if the policy is
subsequently violated. Therefore, any employee or student admitting to or convicted of the
unlawful possession, use, or distribution of illicit drugs and alcohol on campus or at campus-
sponsored events held off campus will be subject to disciplinary action.
• Employees and students may be referred to a drug and alcohol assistance or
rehabilitation program in which they must maintain satisfactory participation.
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• Employees may be subject to disciplinary action up to and including termination of
employment, and may be referred for prosecution.
• Students in violation of the University of Houston-Downtown's Student Disciplinary
Policies and Procedures may be subject to disciplinary action up to and including
expulsion, and may be referred for prosecution.
Further information concerning disciplinary action and appropriate procedures for employees
is available from Employment Services and Operations at (713)-221-8060 and for students
from Student Services at (713) 221-8100.
7. Employee and Student Assistance Programs
The University of Houston-Downtown faculty, staff and students can benefit from services
offered through the Student Assistance Program (SAP) and the Employee Assistance
a. Information. Drug and Alcohol information is made available to faculty, staff, and
students in the Student Counseling Services Office, Student Health Services, and through
the Community Involvement Center in the Office of Student Activities & Events.
Educational materials are screened, purchased, or developed for distribution on-campus.
b. Education. Educational presentations are provided to faculty, staff, and students
throughout the academic year, especially during National Collegiate Drug/Alcohol
Awareness Week, Safe Spring Break programs, Mental Health Awareness Week, and
Wellness Week, as well as at other times.
c. Consultation. Faculty, staff or students can consult with the Counseling Services (SAP)
staff regarding prevention and management of substance abuse problems of their
significant others, employees, students, colleagues and peers.