A Report
from the
Task Force
on Alcohol
and Other
Abuse Issues

Model Campus Alcohol Policy

A statement of values and caring from an institution is the most important influence on standards of conduct and sets the parameters of communal life. Articulating and communicating those values, and the consequences for students and others of disregarding their responsibility to the community as a whole, are imperative.

The Inter-Association Task Force has carefully reviewed the Model Campus Alcohol Policy written and published after the 1985 national conference and has brought up to date its recommendations. The following guidelines reflect the changes incorporated after the April 1998 symposium.

A comprehensive campus policy on alcohol should include the following:

The Institution’s Policy Statement
This broad but succinct philosophical statement, from which all policy components flow, should include a pro-health and safety, anti-abuse comment, an underscoring of individual responsibility for their own actions, an equal emphasis on the university’s “duty to care” responsibility, and a commitment to alcohol education. It must be drafted from each institution’s unique needs, experiences, and comply with all federal, state, and local laws. A Summary of State and Local Laws

  1. Drinking Age Laws—pertaining to the possession, consumption, provision, and sale of alcoholic beverages as well as penalties for violation of such laws.
  2. Regulation of Sale Laws—with special emphasis on Alcohol Beverage Control (ABC) Board requirements for special permits or licenses by groups that charge admission or dues for events involving alcoholic beverages as well as penalties for violation of such laws.
  3. Open Container Laws—governed by local ordinances or state statutes concerning the consumption of alcoholic beverages in outdoor areas or automobiles as well as penalties for violation of such laws.
  4. Driving Under the Influence—governed by local ordinances or state statutes concerning the legal amount of alcohol that may be present in the blood while operating a vehicle as well as penalties for violation of such laws.
  5. False Identification Laws—pertaining to the possession, misuse or manufacturing of illegal identification as applicable with all state and federal statutes as well as penalties for violation of such laws.
  6. Minor In Possession and Contributing to the Delinquency of a Minor—governed by local, state, or federal statutes mandating the legal age to possess alcohol or purchase for those who are not of the legal drinking age as well as penalties for violation of such laws.
  7. Public Intoxication and Disorderly Conduct—governed by local ordinances, state, or federal statutes, concerning the acceptable behavior of those persons who are under the influence of alcohol as well as penalties for violation of such laws.

Institutional Regulations

  1. Locations where alcoholic beverages are permitted to be possessed, served, and consumed by persons of legal drinking age on the campus should be identified. A specific listing of such places (e.g., in private rooms, designated common areas of residence halls, college unions, etc.) helps clarify questions that students, faculty, staff, other individuals, or groups have about where alcoholic beverages are permitted on campus.
  2. Locations where alcoholic beverages are permitted to be sold as opposed to merely be served on campus (e.g., faculty lounge, college union, pub, etc.) should be delineated clearly in accordance with all local, state, and federal statutes.
  3. Guidelines for public and private events that involve alcoholic beverages within the institution’s jurisdiction should be established. All events where alcoholic beverages are available should be registered with the appropriate campus office before such events; noting registration of the event does not constitute approval of the event.
        a. If the function includes the sale of alcoholic beverages, a permit should be obtained from the appropriate issuing agency or ABC Board.
        b. Individuals or organizations sponsoring the event must implement precautionary measures to ensure that alcoholic beverages are not accessible or served to persons under the legal drinking age or to persons who appear intoxicated.
        c. At events where alcoholic beverages are available, direct access to alcoholic beverages shall be limited to designated trained servers.
        d. Consumption of alcoholic beverages should be permitted only within the approved area designated for the event.
        e. Nonalcoholic beverages must be available at the same place as the alcoholic beverages and featured as prominently as the alcoholic beverages.
        f. A reasonable portion of a budget for the event shall be designated for the purchase of food items, naming foods that are low in sodium.
        g. No social event shall permit, tolerate, or encourage any sort of “drinking games,” “chugging contests, “ or any means where alcohol is consumed as part of competition.
        h. Advertising will not promote the consumption of alcoholic beverages for registered events.
        i. Individuals or organizations sponsoring events where alcoholic beverages are available shall provide a safe and secure environment, and follow reasonable risk management procedures.
  4. All membership recruitment functions (e.g., fraternity/sorority rush, departmental clubs, and special interest groups) shall be alcohol free.
  5. A specific statement concerning the use or nonuse of alcoholic beverages in athletic facilities or at athletic events, effectively communicated, should apply equally to student, faculty, staff, alumni, and others attending the event.
  6. Guidelines for any marketing, advertising, and promotion of alcoholic beverages at campus events involving alcohol should be stated and officially disseminated to the appropriate campus organization, the participating private business, and the campus newspaper and other media in which such advertising might occur.
  7. Procedures for adjudicating violation of the alcohol policy should be articulated. Such procedures should include an explicit statement of sanctions.
  8. An institution’s standard of conduct should make specific references to behavior related to alcohol con-sumption.

Collegiate Alcohol Abuse: Recommendations and Guidelines