Office of Human Resources, Diversity & Inclusion

Drug-Free Workplace
» Message from the President
» Philosophy
» Drug and Alcohol Policy for Employees
» Health Risks
» Federal and State Penalties for Drug Possession and Sale
» New York State laws regarding alcohol violations
» How to tell if there is a problem
» Resources

For questions about this policy, or to obtain a printed copy, contact the Office of Human Resources in HAB 601 or phone (845) 257-3171.

Message from the President

Dear Faculty, Staff and Students:

Colleges and universities have a special responsibility to ensure that students and employees understand the dangers of substance abuse and are equipped with the knowledge and ability to establish healthful and productive living patterns. In this regard, the College remains firm in its resolve to provide a model environment for such personal growth and an atmosphere which is free of the abusive use of alcohol and other drugs.

We are justifiably proud of our progress to date in this endeavor. Indeed, over the past ten years, SUNY New Paltz has received four national awards for exemplary prevention programs. But we are not content to rest on our laurels, either.

The enclosed Drug-Free Workplace Policy was created pursuant to the requirements of the Federal Drug Free Schools and Communities Act of 1989 and the Drug Free Workplace Act of 1988. It is intended to apprise the campus of:

  1. specific information regarding the medical and legal risks of alcohol and other drug use, and
  2. counseling and educational resources and treatment programs available to faculty, staff and students, and
  3. policies of the College which specify standards of conduct to which all members of the campus community must comply relative to the use and possession of illicit drugs and alcohol.

I encourage the campus community to review the contents of this document carefully and to work together, learn, teach and live in a drug free community that affects our highest academic goals.

Donald P. Christian


In keeping with its institutional mission, the State University of New York at New Paltz seeks to provide an environment which is conducive to the pursuit and dissemination of knowledge. In doing so, New Paltz strives to maintain a campus community that reinforces acceptable standards of society.

Responsibility for the preservation of a quality academic environment rests with faculty, staff and students alike. High standards of conduct exist throughout the academy, pertaining to academic performance, scholarship, social conduct, professionalism, and personal integrity. Each person is obligated to adhere to these standards upon entrance into the academic community, and the use of illicit drugs and abuse of alcohol is impermissible. Thus New Paltz herein reaffirms its commitment to achieving a drug free campus and to the maintenance of an environment free from abuse of alcohol.

New Paltz shall seek to fulfill this commitment first and foremost through educational means. However, the illegal and abusive use of alcohol and other drugs by any member of the campus community constitutes an untenable threat to the environment and will result in the imposition of disciplinary sanctions and possible criminal prosecution. Individuals who may be experiencing a problem with alcohol or drug abuse either directly or indirectly are encouraged to voluntarily seek assistance. New Paltz provides information to individuals concerning counseling, treatment and rehabilitation.

Drug and Alcohol Policy for Employees

Congress passed and the President signed the Federal Drug-Free Workplace Act of 1988 and Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act of 1989. The following is the Drug and Alcohol Policy for employees at the State University of New York at New Paltz. Research Foundation employees are included under this Federal Law.

New York State prohibits on-the-job use of or impairment from alcohol and controlled substances. An employee may be required to undergo medical testing if a supervisor has a reasonable suspicion that the employee is unable to perform his or her job duties due to a disability which may be caused by the use of drugs or alcohol.

If the cause of the disability is found to be drug or alcohol related, the personnel or employee relations officer in conjunction with the employee's supervisor, may refer the employee to voluntary and confidential participation in the statewide Employee Assistance Program. Other available options include pursuing disciplinary leave procedures or disciplinary measures.

Variations of the State Policy on alcohol and substance abuse in the workplace may be the subject of disciplinary action pursuant to Section 75 of the Civil Service Law or the Disciplinary Articles of collectively negotiated agreements.

The term "controlled substances" as used here refers to the hundreds of chemicals listed by the federal government in the Controlled Substances Act.

  • The unlawful use, possession, dispensation, manufacture or distribution of controlled substances in all New Paltz work locations is prohibited.
  • Employees who unlawfully use, possess, dispense, manufacture or distribute controlled substances will be subject to disciplinary procedures consistent with applicable laws, rules, regulations, and collective bargaining agreements.
  • Employees must notify New Paltz Office of Human Resources of any criminal drug statute conviction for a violation occurring in the workplace, or at a work site, no later than five (5) business days after such conviction.

No person shall possess, sell or give away alcoholic beverages without proper authorization in any building or on any property owned or controlled by New Paltz. Open containers may not be possessed anywhere on campus unless so authorized in accordance with New Paltz regulations, local ordinances, and State laws. New Paltz holds persons responsible for their conduct at all times, including behaviors which occur while under the influence of alcohol, and persons violating these policies will be subject to disciplinary action.

Health Risks

The use of illegal drugs and the abuse of alcohol may have serious health consequences, including damage to the heart, lungs and other organs. Alcohol-related accidents are the number one cause of death for people aged 15-24. The most significant health risk besides death is addiction. Chemical dependency is a disease that, if not arrested, is fatal. No addict (including alcoholics and smokers) ever thought he/she would become addicted.

  • The use of cocaine or amphetamines greatly increases the risk of a heart attack.
  • Stimulants ("uppers," speed, crack, methyl, crystal) may cause permanent damage to the brain, heart, lungs, and other organs from long term use.
  • Medical consequences of alcohol abuse include liver damage and disease, gastrointestinal problems and brain damage, as well as causing injury to the fetus during pregnancy.
  • Inhalants ("poppers," rush, laughing gas, glue, paint thinner) may cause mental confusion, mood swings, delusions and hallucinations.
  • The risk of breast cancer is increased by 30% among women who consume as few as 3 alcoholic drinks per day.
  • Depressants ("downers," ludes, reds, 714s, barbs) greatly increase the risk of car crashes because they affect vision, judgment, coordination, and physical skills.
  • The use of hallucinogens, especially PCP, can result in an irreversible drug-induced psychotic state and/or delusions, which may trigger life-threatening behavior.
  • Users of heroin and other opiates risk HIV infection/AIDS from sharing needles.
  • In cases of rape, 75% of the men and 55% of the women involved had been using alcohol or other drugs.

Federal and State Penalties for Drug Possession and Sale

The Federal Controlled Substances Act provides penalties up to 15 years imprisonment and fines up to $25,000 for unlawful distribution or possession of a controlled substance*, a person may be subject to one year of imprisonment and fines of up to $5,000. Any person who unlawfully distributes a controlled substance to a person under 21 years of age may be punished by up to twice the term of imprisonment and fine otherwise authorized by law.

Federal trafficking penalties for Schedule I & II drugs range from a minimum of 5 years to a maximum of life in prison. Penalties for trafficking Schedule III & IV drugs range from 3 to 5 years in prison and a fine of $25,000. Federal penalties for trafficking marijuana range from 5 to 10 years of imprisonment and up to a $5 million dollar fine.

New York State
The State of New York has established severe sanctions for the possession, use, and sale of controlled substances, which are consistent with Federal penalties, established for such. The specific criminal sanctions are delineated in the New York State Penal Law. The severity of the offense depends on the type and quantity of the illegal substance, as well as the holder's intent (personal use, distribution or sale). 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 15-25 years. Unlawful possession of marijuana (section 221.05 NYS Penal Law) is a violation, resulting in a fine of not more than $200 for the first offense. Additional violations result in larger fines and the imposition of misdemeanor criminal charges, which include the establishment of a permanent criminal record.


  • Schedule I: Heroin, LSD, Mescaline, Psilocybin, Other Hallucinogens, PCP, Quaalude, and MDA.
  • Schedule II: Morphine, Demerol, Codeine, Percodan, Fentanyl, Diludid, Seconal, Nembutal, Cocaine, Ecstasy, Amphetamines and other opium and opium extracts and narcotics.
  • Schedule III: Certain barbiturates such as amobarbital and codeine containing medicines such as Fiorinal #3, Doriden, and codeine-based cough suppressants and all anabolic steroids.
  • Schedule IV: Barbiturates, narcotics and stimulants, including Valium, Talwin, Librium, Equanil, Darvon, Darvocet, Placidyl, Tranzene, Serax, Ionamin (yellow jackets).
  • Schedule V: Compounds that contain very limited amounts of codeine, dihydro-codeine, ethylmorphine, opium and atromine (Robitussin AC)
  • Schedule VI: Marijuana, Hashish, Hash Oil, Tetrahydrocannabinol.

Under Penal Law "sell" under Controlled substances definitions means to sell, exchange, give or dispose of to another, or to offer or agree to do the same.

New York State laws regarding alcohol violations (not inclusive)


Driving While Ability Impaired (DWAI) (BAC of .05 to .09)
Penalty: $300 minimum fine, $500 maximum fine, up to 15 days in jail and 90 day revocation of license for first offense.

Driving While Intoxicated (DWI) (BAC of .10 or more)
Penalty: $500 minimum fine, $1000 maximum fine, up to one year in jail and minimum 6 month license revocation

Felony Driving While Intoxicated (second DWI conviction in 10 years)
Penalty: $1000 fine, 1 year in jail and/or 3 years probation

Possession by persons under the age of 21
Penalty: $50 fine per offense

Use of false ID for alcohol purchase
Penalty: $200 fine, 5 days in jail, or both, revocation of false N.Y.S. driver's license for 90 days.

Unlawfully dealing with a child in the first degree
Procuring alcoholic beverages for persons under the age of 21.
Including selling or causing to be given to the person under age 21 any alcoholic beverage by other than a parent.
Penalty: fine up to $200, up to 5 days in jail or both.

How to tell if there is a problem

How Can I tell if I Have a Problem with Drugs or Alcohol?

You may have a problem with drugs or alcohol, if:

  • You can't predict whether or not you will use drugs or get drunk.
  • You believe that in order to have fun you need to drink and/or use drugs.
  • You turn to alcohol and/or drugs after a confrontation or argument, or to relieve uncomfortable feelings.
  • You drink more or use more drugs to get the same effect that you got with smaller amounts.
  • You drink or use drugs alone.
  • You remember how last night began, but not how it ended, so you're worried there may be a problem.
  • You have trouble at work or in school because of your drinking or drug use.
  • You make promises to yourself or others that you will stop getting drunk or using drugs.
  • You feel alone, scared, miserable, and depressed.

How Can I Tell if a Friend or a Loved One Has a Problem with Alcohol, Marijuana, or Other Illicit Drugs?

If your friend or loved one has one or more of the following signs, he or she may have a problem with drugs or alcohol:

  • getting high on drugs or getting drunk on a regular basis
  • lying about things, or the amount of drugs or alcohol they are using
  • avoiding you and others in order to get high or drunk
  • giving up activities they used to do such as sports, homework, or hanging out with friends who do not use drugs or drink
  • having to use more marijuana or other illicit drugs to get the same effects
  • constantly talking about using drugs or drinking
  • believing that in order to have fun they need to drink or use marijuana or other drugs
  • pressuring others to use drugs or drink
  • getting into trouble with the law
  • taking risks, including sexual risks and driving under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs
  • feeling run-down, hopeless, depressed, or even suicidal
  • suspension from school for an alcohol or drug related incident
  • missing work or poor work performance because of drinking or drug use.

If you or a loved one may have a problem, see Resources in this guide.


Employee Assistance Program
Confidential free referral service for employees
SUB 336
Phone 845-257-2886


Ulster County Mental Health Services
(for Orange or Dutchess County referral ask for number)
560 Rt. 299, Highland, NY
Phone 845-883-9747

  • Individual and Group Counseling
  • Crisis Services
  • Mandatory DWI treatment program

Mental Health Association of Ulster County
221 Tuyten Bridge Rd., Kingston, NY
Phone: 845-336-4747

  • Provides information and referral to support groups and private practitioners

Family of New Paltz
51 N. Chestnut Street, New Paltz, NY
Phone: 845-255-8801

  • Hotline and crisis intervention services
  • Referrals to appropriate agencies
  • Advocacy

Ulster County STOP DWI
Phone 845-340-3448

  • Victim Impact Panels
  • TIPS Training and other services


AA (Alcoholics Anonymous)
Phone: 845-331-6360
Visit their Web site at
For an AA meeting online:

AL-ANON (Significant Others)
Phone: 845-339-5116

National Helpline for Substance Abuse and Referral Services:
Phone: 1-800-662-HELP

NA (Narcotics Anonymous of Mid-Hudson)
Online help for drug abuse at: 845-431-9011

NYS AIDS/HIV Info Service
Phone: 800-541-2437

CDC National Sexually Transmitted Disease & HIV/AIDS Hotline
Phone: 800-342-AIDS (for Spanish 800-344-7432)

NYS Alcohol and Substance Abuse Hotline
Phone: 800-522-5353

National Clearinghouse for Alcohol and Drug Information
Phone: 800-SAY-NO-TO
Or visit their website at