Program For Prevention Of Drug And Alcohol Abuse

The Federal Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act Amendments of 1989 (“Amendments”) and the Drug Free Workplace Act of 1988 require that colleges adopt and implement a program for prevention of the unlawful possession, illicit drug manufacture, use, or distribution of illicit drugs and alcohol on campus or as part of college activities that occur off-campus.

The Amendments further require that we distribute information about the program annually to every member of our community. The information must include the College’s policy statement about the unlawful use, possession, or distribution of alcohol or illicit drugs, and a description of the College’s disciplinary sanctions. We are also required to provide information about applicable local, state, and federal criminal sanctions, the associated health risks of drug and alcohol abuse, and the available support services for help in dealing with problems associated with drug and alcohol abuse.

The program and its underlying policy are to be reviewed regularly and amended or revised in accordance with our experience and with changes in applicable local, state, or federal laws and regulations. Students should note in particular that under New York law, possession of alcoholic beverages by persons under 21 with the intent to consume the beverage is unlawful and for those over 21, a college I.D. is not an acceptable proof of age.

Please address inquiries about the program to the Substance Abuse, Awareness, and Prevention Program (212) 774-0727, the Counseling and Wellness Center (212) 774-0727, the Health and Wellness Services Office (212) 774-0755, the Office of Student Affairs (212) 774-0750, and the Human Resources Office (212) 517-0530. We encourage anyone who believes that he or she has a problem with drug or alcohol abuse to seek help through these offices or through the services listed in the attached statement.

The following is a copy of the College’s policy statement pursuant to these requirements, which applies to all of the College’s faculty members, students, and staff members:

Marymount Manhattan College Policy Statement

Pursuant to the Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act Amendments of 1989 and the Drug-Free Workplace Act of 1988

I. Policy Statement

Marymount Manhattan College is committed to creating for its students, faculty and staff an environment in which the misuse of alcohol and drugs is minimized, which encourages moderation, safety and individual accountability, and which provides an atmosphere free of coercion and peer pressure to abuse alcohol or to use unlawful drugs. The College prohibits the unlawful possession, use, manufacture, or distribution of illicit drugs and alcohol by students, faculty members, or staff members while on College property, in residence halls, or while participating in College-sponsored activities or conducting College business off-premises.

An employee convicted of illicit drug activity in the workplace must report that conviction to the Human Resources department within five (5) days of the conviction. If the convicted employee is working on a federal grant or contract, the College is legally required to report the conviction to the federal government.

II. Standards of Conduct

  • The College strictly prohibits the unlawful possession, use, or distribution of illicit drugs on College premises or at College activities.
  • The sale, service, possession, and consumption of alcoholic beverages on College premises or at related College activities must comply fully with all applicable laws. New York State law provides that:

“No person shall sell, deliver or give away, or cause or permit or procure to be sold, delivered, or given away, any alcoholic beverages to:

  • Any person, actually or apparently, under the age of twenty-one years;
  • Any visibly intoxicated person; or
  • Any habitual drunkard known to be such to the person authorized to dispense any alcoholic beverages.”

Any person who misrepresents the age of a person under the age of twenty-one years for the purpose of inducing the sale of any alcoholic beverage … to such person, is guilty of an offense …”

“No person under the age of twenty-one years shall present or offer to any licensee under this chapter [the alcoholic beverage control law], or to the agent or employee of such license, any written evidence of age which is false, fraudulent or not actually his own, for the purpose of purchasing or attempting to purchase any alcoholic beverage.”

The only permissible forms of identification for the purchase of alcoholic beverages are a valid U.S. or Canadian driver’s license, a New York State Department of Motor Vehicles Non-Driver identification card, a valid passport, or military identification. College identification cards are not acceptable.

In addition, New York State law states, “no person under the age of twenty-one years shall possess any alcoholic beverage … with the intent to consume such beverage.”

  • At all events or activities at which any alcoholic beverage is to be served or sold, the individual or group sponsoring such shall be responsible for compliance with all laws and regulations, as well as College policies, regarding alcoholic beverages. In addition, sponsors must adhere to the following standards: 
  • The sponsor must obtain any government license or permit required to serve or to sell alcoholic beverages,
  • The license, permit, and any government-required posters, signs or notices must be prominently displayed at the site of such event.

Further, the Marymount Manhattan College Student Handbook contains additional policies with regard to alcoholic beverages and illicit drugs.

III. College Sanctions

Members of the College community who violate this policy shall be subject to sanction. Taking into account the circumstances of each case, sanctions for students may range from warnings to expulsion from the College, and sanctions for employees may range from warnings to termination. At the discretion of the College, as an alternative to, or in addition to any disciplinary action taken, students or employees may be required to participate in and to complete satisfactorily an appropriate counseling or rehabilitation program. The College may maintain records of such discipline in a student’s record or an employee’s personnel file. Enforcement of these sanctions shall be through the College’s existing disciplinary procedures for students, faculty, and staff, as appropriate.

IV. Criminal Sanctions

The unlawful possession, use, or distribution of illicit drugs and alcohol is punishable by harsh sanctions by the State of New York and by the United States Government.

Where illicit drugs are involved, the seriousness of the offense and the penalty imposed upon conviction usually depends upon the individual drug and the amount of the drug held or sold. For example, in New York State the criminal possession of four or more ounces of cocaine is a Class A-1 felony, punishable by a minimum of 15 to 25 years, and a maximum of life in prison. The state may also impose fines of up to $100,000. Treated similarly is the sale of two or more ounces of cocaine. The criminal possession of more than eight ounces of marijuana is a Class E felony, punishable by up to two years in prison and a fine of up to $5,000, as is the sale of more than 25 grams of marijuana. It is important to be aware that New York treats even giving drugs, including marijuana, as a sale. Federal penalties are similar to those assessed by the State.

A person need not be in actual physical possession of a controlled substance to be guilty of a crime. The unlawful presence of a controlled substance in an automobile is presumptive evidence of knowing possession of each passenger unless one of the occupants has concealed the substance on his/her person. Similarly, the presence of certain substances, including marijuana, in open view in a room under circumstances demonstrating intent to prepare the substance for sale is presumptive evidence of knowing possession of anyone in close proximity.

Criminal penalties may also result from the misuse of alcoholic beverages. In New York, if one gives or sells an alcoholic beverage to a person less than 21 years of age, the person commits a Class A misdemeanor, punishable by up to one year in jail and a $1,000 fine. The sale of any kind of alcoholic beverage without a license or permit is also a misdemeanor punishable by a fine, a jail term, or both. The law prohibits persons under the age of 21 from possessing alcoholic beverages with intent to consume them. Each violation is punishable by a $50 fine. Appropriate internal or external authorities may also seize and destroy the beverages. An individual can be fined up to $100 and/or required to perform community service if he or she is under 21 and presents a falsified proof of age when attempting to purchase alcoholic beverages. A person can have a driver’s license suspended for 90 days if he or she is less than 21 years of age, and uses a driver’s license to try to purchase alcohol illegally.

Please understand that these are only examples of the penalties that a person may face for the illegal possession, use, and distribution of alcoholic beverages and drugs. It is the College’s policy to discourage violations of federal, state, and local law by its employees and students. Where appropriate, the College may refer employees and students who violate such laws for prosecution by the relevant governmental authorities and will cooperate fully with such authorities.

V. Health Risks Associated with Alcohol Abuse and Illicit Drug Use

The following are summaries provided by the federal government of the health risks associated with illicit drug use and alcohol abuse. These are an overview and each individual will experience the drug or alcoholic beverage in a different way given his or her physical and psychological characteristics.

Alcoholic consumption causes a number of marked changes in behavior. Even low doses significantly impair judgment and reduce the coordination required to drive a car safely, increasing the likelihood that the driver will be involved in an accident. Low to moderate doses of alcohol also increases the incidence of a variety of aggressive acts, including sexual assault, and spouse and child abuse. Moderate to high doses of alcohol cause marked impairments in higher mental functions, severely altering a person’s ability to learn and remember information. Very high doses, which vary greatly for different people, can cause respiratory depression and death. If combined with other depressants of the central nervous system, much lower doses of alcohol will produce the effects just described.

Repeated use of alcohol can lead to dependence. Sudden cessation of alcohol intake is likely to produce withdrawal symptoms, including severe anxiety, tremors, hallucinations, and convulsions. Alcohol withdrawal can be life-threatening. Long-term consumption of large quantities of alcohol, particularly when combined with poor nutrition, can also lead to permanent damage to vital organs such as the brain and the liver.

Mothers who drink alcohol during pregnancy may give birth to infants with fetal alcohol syndrome. These infants have irreversible physical abnormalities and mental retardation. In addition, research indicates that children of alcoholic parents are at greater risk of becoming alcoholics.

The use of illicit drugs has serious risks for the user. Certain illicit drugs, if taken in sufficient doses or by using certain methods, may result in immediate death or life-threatening conditions. They may also result in irreparable damage to vital organs and create chronic and debilitating health concerns. Prolonged use of certain illicit drugs could cause liver disease, mental impairments, and certain cancers. The combination of illicit drugs and alcohol abuse will exacerbate physical and mental ailments. Illicit drugs also create physical and mental dependencies. As with alcohol withdrawal, withdrawal from illicit drugs causes a variety of physical and mental problems, which may be life threatening. Illicit drug abuse relates to and often results in significant social problems such as job loss, divorce, and financial stresses, and may cause the user to engage in criminal conduct to support the dependency. Using illicit drugs during pregnancy will harm the fetus and may result in miscarriage or birth defects.

VI. Counseling and Support Programs

The College educates students about alcohol and drug use through specific programs throughout the year, such as programs in the residence halls, and through published information and other services offered by the Office of Health and Wellness Services, the Substance Abuse Awareness and Prevention Program, and the Office of Student Affairs.

Students who wish to discuss in confidence matters related to drug and alcohol abuse are encouraged to contact the College’s Substance Abuse Awareness and Prevention Program or the College’s Counseling and Wellness Center (CWC). Staff members are available for counseling, and can serve as consultants or resource persons for referrals. In addition, group therapy support is available to individuals and their immediate families.

Similarly, employees may seek the assistance of the Human Resources department in locating appropriate outside services.

There is a wide range of Section I treatment programs for drug and alcohol abuse in New York City. The following is a sampling of the self-help and resource organizations that are located in New York, which offer services or referral information at little or no cost:

Al-Anon (212) 941-0094
Alcoholics Anonymous Inter-Group (212) 647-1680
AA World Services (212) 870-3400
Cocaine Anonymous 1-800-347-8998
Cocaine Hotline (Phoenix House) (212) 262-2463
Marijuana Anonymous (12-Step Program) (212) 459-4423
Nar-Anon 1-800-984-0066
Narcotics Anonymous (212) 929-6262
OASAS: Office of Alcoholism and Substance
Abuse Services

In addition, there are numerous private and voluntary programs offering different types of alcohol and drug treatment services. Most require payment or appropriate medical insurance. The following organizations located near the College campus offer a variety of treatment services:

Continuum Health Services
(A referral service that the College
reimburses for referrals for medical services)

(212) 420-2882 
Walk-In Clinics:

Mt. Sinai Medical Center
312 East 94th Street
(The Adolescent Help Center will
provide free services up to age 21
if the adolescent is unable to pay.
By Appointment Only.)

(212) 423-3000

NY Presbyterian Hospital
STARS: Substance Treatment and
Research Services (Free and
513 W. 166th Street, 3rd Floor

(212) 923-3031
Emergency Rooms:

Lenox Hill Hospital
100 East 77th Street

(212) 434-2000

NY Presbyterian Hospital
68th Street and York Avenue

(212) 746-5454

If you have any questions about these programs, or about any other aspect of this program, please call:

1) Substance Abuse Awareness
Prevention Program
(212) 774-0727
2) Counseling and Wellness Center (CWC) (212) 774-0727
3) Health and Wellness Services (212) 774-0755
4) Office of Student Affairs (212) 774-0750
5) Office of Human Resources (212) 517-0530

Revised: March 2006