The unlawful possession, use, or distribution of illicit drugs and alcohol presents both legal and health risks to the individual which can have a significant adverse effect on the campus community. Therefore, campus standards of conduct for students and employees prohibit the unlawful possession, use or distribution of illicit drugs and alcohol on premises owned or controlled by the University of Illinois at Springfield. The unlawful possession, use or distribution of illicit drugs or alcohol is prohibited during any activity conducted or sponsored by the campus or by any organizational unit of the campus, including employment or course-related activities.
Risks of Illicit Drug and Alcohol Abuse
The legal sanctions which can be imposed for unlawful possession, uses or distribution of illicit drugs and alcohol are severe. A first offense of illegal possession of cannabis and alcohol under Illinois law is a misdemeanor. A first offense of illegal possession of a controlled substance under Illinois law is a felony. Penalties under Illinois law for possession include probation or imprisonment, fines and forfeiture of personal property related to the illegal possession. The penalties progress for subsequent convictions of possession. The distribution or sale of certain illicit drugs under Illinois law is a Class X felony with mandatory imprisonment, as well as fines and forfeitures. The Federal law on illicit drugs is equally severe. Federal penalties include imprisonment, fines, forfeiture of personal property and denial or revocation of Federal benefits and licenses (financial aid, federal contracts, professional licenses, firearm permits, etc.). Illinois has included the denial of licenses and benefits in some cases as well.
The health risks of illicit drugs and alcohol abuse include immediate impairment, long-term effects and withdrawal syndrome. The immediate impairments caused by illicit drug and alcohol abuse are both mental and physical. Mental impairments include the false sense of euphoria, disorientation, illusions, hallucinations, abnormally relaxed inhibitions or abnormally heightened alertness or excitation. Physical impairments include poor perception of time and distance, loss of motor control, nausea, insomnia, increased pulse rate and blood pressure and changes in appetite. These impairments can make normal activity, such as driving or working with equipment, life threatening. The use of illicit drugs or alcohol during pregnancy can cause birth defects or pre-natal addiction.
Long term effects of illicit drugs and alcohol can include addiction or dependence, damage to vital organs, paranoia, possible psychosis, fatigue, hallucinations, agitation, memory loss and impaired thought process. Overdoses can cause weak and rapid pulse, coma and death. Withdrawal syndrome can include insomnia or long periods of sleep; convulsions, tremors or cramps; nausea or loss of appetite; anxiety, depression, irritability, hyperactivity or disorientation. Withdrawal from some depressants can cause death.
Information about specific legal sanctions and the detailed effects of various drugs and alcohol is available from the offices of Campus Health Services, the vice chancellor for student affairs, and Human Resources.
To assist students and employees who may have a problem with illicit drug or alcohol use, several counseling, treatment, rehabilitation, and re-entry programs are available. In addition to the programs listed below, employees are entitled to use the Employee Assistance Program administered by the Illinois Department of Central Management Services. Individuals are encouraged to contact these programs directly or through the Campus Health Services (6-6676) or Counseling Center (6-7122):
- St. John’s Hospital Chemical Dependency Rehabilitation Program, 800 East Carpenter, Springfield, IL, (217) 525-5629
- Triangle Center, Inc., 120 North 11th Street, Springfield, IL, (217) 544-9858
- The Lighthouse, 702 West Chestnut, Bloomington, IL, (309) 827-6026
- Bromenn Healthcare, Franklin Avenue, Normal, IL, (309) 454-0702
- Hyland Center of St. Anthony’s Medical Center, 10020 Kennerly Road, St. Louis, MO, (314) 525-7200
Possession or distribution of illicit drugs or alcohol will be reported to the Campus Police Department. Campus disciplinary sanctions for possession or distribution of illicit drugs or alcohol in violation of this policy shall be:
- By employees, either suspension without pay or termination;
- By students, suspension or expulsion.
Campus sanctions for the use of illicit drugs or alcohol in violation of this policy shall normally be:
- By employees, a written reprimand to the personnel file for a first offense, a suspension and required program of treatment for a second offense, termination for a third offense;
- By students, a warning and required counseling for a first offense, probation and required treatment for a second offense, expulsion with the required completion of a rehabilitation program prior to readmission for a third offense.
Circumstances which endanger the health or safety of others or in which damage to property occurs may warrant that a more severe sanction be imposed.
Statement on a Drug-free Workplace
The University of Illinois at Springfield is committed to providing a drug-free workplace in compliance with the federal Drug-Free Workplace Act of 1988. The unlawful manufacture, distribution, dispensing, possession or use of a controlled substance is prohibited on University premises. Violations of this prohibition may result in the imposition of disciplinary action up to and including termination. Violations may also result in mandatory participation in an approved drug abuse assistance or rehabilitation program.
The abuse of controlled substances may seriously injure the health of employees, adversely impair their performance and endanger the safety and well-being of fellow employees, students and members of the general public. The campus, therefore, encourages employees who have a problem involving the use of controlled substances to seek professional advice and treatment. A list of available drug counseling, rehabilitation and employee assistance programs may be obtained from the Human Resources, the Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs Office, the Campus Health Service, or the Office of Student Affairs.
As a condition of employment under federal grants and contracts, each employee must abide by the terms of this statement. Each employee must notify the Campus Legal Counsel no later than five days after any conviction, plea of no contest or the imposition of penalties or sentencing by a state or federal court for a violation of a local, state or federal drug-related law, if such violation involves campus premises or involves activities engaged in during work on a federally funded project. The campus, in turn, is obligated to notify the federal granting agency within 10 days of receiving such notice from an employee or otherwise receiving actual notice of court action. Within 30 days of receiving such notice, the campus will take appropriate personnel action against such an employee up to and including termination, or will require such employee to participate satisfactorily in a drug abuse assistance or rehabilitation program approved by a federal, state or local health, law enforcement or other such agency.
A copy of this statement has been provided to each employee and student employee of the campus. Each employee and student employee hired after the issue date shall be given a copy of the above statement and shall acknowledge in writing receipt of the statement.