Please review the following updates to the Illegal Drug policy and the Statement on Self-Reporting and Bystander Intervention:
The illegal use or possession of any controlled substance is strictly prohibited by the university. The illegal use of controlled substances is incompatible with the goals of the academic community. Illegally possessing, using, manufacturing, possessing with intent to manufacture, selling, dispensing, or distributing any substance controlled under state or federal law is prohibited. Possession of used or unused drug paraphernalia is also prohibited (unless there is a documented medical need). Additionally, misusing and abusing medications or prescribed medications (controlled under state or federal law) is prohibited. Students can be suspended or dismissed from the university for a first offense. Students who are also university employees are also subject to employee discipline.
Statement on Self-Reporting and Bystander Intervention
Virginia Tech has a Statement on Self-Reporting and Bystander Intervention which is very similar to traditional “Good Samaritan” and “Medical Amnesty” policies. Being an active bystander, as well as student health and safety are primary concerns at Virginia Tech. This statement affirms our collective desire for students to seek medical assistance for themselves or others who are significantly intoxicated as a result of alcohol or other substances.
In an effort to avoid confusion around the terms of “Good Samaritan” and “amnesty,” which could imply no follow-up, consequence, or outcome, Virginia Tech created a statement to convey our response to when community members seek medical assistance for themselves or others in a medical emergency as a result of alcohol or drug use. We do not want students to feel as though they are choosing between conduct consequences and seeking assistance. If someone requires assistance, we want them to seek assistance for their health and safety. If medical assistance is sought, Student Conduct will not pursue conduct charges against the individual or organization who sought assistance, or the individual in need of assistance.
Actively assisting requires that an individual:
- Call the rescue squad or the police or seek other individuals qualified to assess the student’s condition, such as a professional or student staff member in Housing and Residence Life.
- Stay with the intoxicated student until help arrives.
Egregious alcohol/illegal drug violations, violations having a significant individual or community impact, and prior violations that demonstrate an actual, potential, or perceived pattern of behavior are not likely to have outcomes that are mitigated and are not likely to be protected under this policy.
Those behaviors not covered under this statement include:
Violations of the Code of Conduct other than the alcohol/drugs policy. For example:
- Abusive conduct (i.e. assault, battery, harassment, stalking, recording/distributing images without consent)
- Sexual and gender-based violence
- Damage to property
- Fake ID
- Disorderly or disruptive conduct (i.e. behavior that interferes with the duties of a public/civil official, the rights and/or activities of others, or the orderly functioning of the university and/or the performance of the duties of university personnel)
- Endangering others through use, possession, or providing alcohol or the controlled substance
- Providing alcohol/ drugs to minors under the age of 18 years of age
- Providing alcohol/ drugs in bulk
- Bias related incidents
- Distribution or possession with the intent to distribute drugs
- Students who have prior alcohol/ drug related conduct history or have engaged in high-risk alcohol/ substance use before
- Action by police or other law enforcement personnel
Actions to be taken by Student Conduct:
- The assistance seeker and the individual in need of assistance will be required to meet with a member of Student Conduct if they met any of the current criteria for a violation of the alcohol beverage and/ or illegal drug policies
- Those persons will likely be issued educational requirements that may include, but are not limited to, alcohol and/or drug education, counseling, and/or a substance abuse assessment
- Document the actions taken by the student and the office
- Failure to complete the educational assignments or treatment recommendations will typically result in further conduct action