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    May 18, 2024  
2018-2019 Law School Student Handbook 
2018-2019 Law School Student Handbook [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Drug-and Alcohol-Free Policy

What follows is the University-wide policy, which applies to both students and employees.

GGU has adopted and implemented a program to prevent the unlawful possession, use or distribution of illicit drugs and alcohol by its employees and students on school premises or as part of any of its activities. In addition to compliance requirements of the Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act (as amended in 1989), GGU subscribes to providing a University environment free of drug and alcohol abuse. Every member of the GGU community-staff, faculty, students, alumni, and visitors-has the right and responsibility to pursue his or her professional and academic endeavors in a safe, effective, drug-free environment.

As part of its drug prevention program for employees and students, this policy contains the following information:

  1. Standards of conduct that clearly prohibit the unlawful possession, use or distribution of illicit drugs and alcohol by employees and students on University property or as part of any of its activities;
  2. A description of applicable local, state and federal legal sanctions pertaining to the unlawful possession, use or distribution of illicit drugs and alcohol;
  3. A description of health risks associated with the use of illicit drugs, abuse or prescription and over-the-counter drugs, as well as the abuse of alcohol; and
  4. A clear statement of the disciplinary sanctions that GGU will impose on employees and students who violate the standards of conduct.
  1. Employees found to be in violation of this policy may be subject to disciplinary action and/or corrective action, up to and including termination of employment.
  2. Students who violate this policy may be subject to suspension or expulsion.
  3. Employees or students who violate this policy (and concurrent California state statutes) may also be subject to criminal prosecution.

GGU encourages employees who suspect they have a substance abuse problem to seek assistance through the Employee Assistance Program (EAP). Students may seek assistance through the Wellness Resources in the Office of Student Affairs.

The Head of Human Resources oversees employee compliance with the GGU Drug and Alcohol Free Policy. Department heads and supervisors and managers are also responsible for faculty and staff awareness and compliance with this policy. The Dean for the Office of Student Affairs oversees student compliance with the GGU Drug and Alcohol Free Policy.

Health Risks of Alcohol and Drugs

Alcohol acts as a depressant, affects moods, dulls the senses and impairs coordination, memory, reflexes and judgment. Other effects of alcohol abuse may be behavioral changes and self-destructive urges. Central nervous system damage may include poor vision, memory loss, loss of sensation and coordination, brain damage, and seizures. Digestive tract damage may result in cancer of the mouth, irritation of the esophagus and stomach (nausea), stomach ulcers, inflammation/cancer of the liver, and cirrhosis of the liver. Heart trouble may include high blood pressure, irregular heartbeat, angina, or a heart attack. Malnutrition may also result from alcohol abuse.

  1. Other Drugs
    The use and abuse of illicit drugs may result in damage to the lungs, immune system, reproductive system, loss of memory, seizures, coma, malnutrition, behavioral changes (that include violence) as well as damage to the heart, liver, and kidneys. Death may also occur with the use and/or abuse of these drugs. Further abuse of prescription and over-the-counter drugs may have similar physiological effects.

    The following drugs may cause, but are not limited to, damage as listed:
  • Marijuana

Damage to lungs, reproductive system and brain functions; impairment of memory; and inability to concentrate.

  • Cocaine

Damage to lungs and immune system; malnutrition; seizures; increase in heart rate and breathing rate. Overdose may result in heart stops, coma, or death.

  • Heroin

Overdose can cause coma and death.

  • Hallucinogens

Sudden, bizarre behavioral changes that may include extreme violence. Memory loss can be permanent.

  • Amphetamines

Sustained physical “high” that can lead to malnutrition, heart problems, and death.

  • Sedatives and narcotic pain pills (legal but considered controlled substance due to abuse)

Liver and kidney damage.

  • Anabolic Steroids

Cardiovascular and reproductive systems impairment; jaundice; sterility; heart attacks, and strokes.

Behavioral Education

For employees, GGU has an Employee Assistance Program. Assist-U, GGU’s employee assistance program vendor, provides confidential access to professional counseling services for help in confronting personal problems, including alcohol and other substance abuse. The EAP is available to all employees and their immediate family members offering problem assessment, short-term counseling, and referral to appropriate community and private services. Assist-U also conducts on-site educational seminars and workshops. For employees and students, the Office of Student Affairs offers a regularly scheduled Alcohol Awareness Workshop.

GGU Alcohol and Chemical Dependency Policies

Employees and students are subject to sanctions for conduct which constitutes a hazard to the health, safety, or well-being of members of the GGU community or which is detrimental to GGU’s interest, whether such conduct occurs on-campus, off campus, or at GGU-sponsored events.

A chemically dependent person is dependent on alcohol or any other addictive substance (drugs). Chemical dependency causes behavioral problems or interferes with a person’s health, work, or academic performance.


Possession or consumption of alcohol on campus is permitted on the following condition:

At authorized GGU events, only wine, champagne, and beer may be served on GGU property. In the State of California, the legal age for the consumption of alcoholic beverages is 21 years. Those under 21 years of age are considered minors and therefore cannot be given, sold, or consume alcohol. The sale and service of alcohol is strictly regulated by the state Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) board. A “sale” of alcohol is broadly defined and includes any financial payment. When alcohol is served at any event, including meals, where tickets are sold, a permit is required from the ABC board.

In order to ensure that the service of alcoholic beverages is properly regulated at all GGU-sanctioned events, including events initiated by approved GGU student organizations, whether held on- or off- campus, the following conditions must be observed:

  1. Alcoholic beverages shall not be served at GGU-sanctioned events unless prior written approval is obtained. (See “Obtaining Approval to Serve Alcoholic Beverages at a University-Sanctioned Event” of this policy.)
  2. Consumption of alcoholic beverages shall not be the main focus or purpose of the event.
  3. The individual or organization sponsoring the event is responsible for compliance with all applicable laws, regulations and GGU policies.
  4. All individuals wishing to be served an alcoholic beverage may be required to present a valid identification card that includes birth date or age.
  5. No person under 21 years of age shall be served an alcoholic beverage.
  6. No person shall be served alcoholic beverages if that person is, or appears to be intoxicated.
  7. No person under the age of 21 shall present any written evidence of his or her age that is false, fraudulent, or not actually his or her own to purchase or be served, or to try to purchase or be served, any alcoholic beverage or to gain access or to try to enter any event or activity at which any alcoholic beverage is being served.
  8. No person shall in any way misrepresent the age of another person or help another person to misrepresent his or her age so that such person can be served or try to enter any event or activity in which alcohol is being served.
  9. Non-alcoholic beverages must be available in equal or greater quantities, and featured as prominently as the alcoholic beverages.
  10. Food items must be available in sufficient quantity for the number of persons attending the event and to serve as an alternative stimulus for social interaction.
  11. Alcohol should not be the focal point of the event or the advertisement. The University reserves the right to deny the event and/or advertising of the event. If alcohol is to be advertised, the availability of non-alcoholic beverages must be noted in the same advertisement.

The Dean for the Office of Student Affairs, the Head of Human Resources, the Associate Dean for Student Affairs, Law School, and/or the Director of Business Services may impose whatever further condition(s) and/or restriction(s) they think necessary in order to ensure compliance with this policy.

Obtaining Approval to Serve Alcoholic Beverages at a University- Sanctioned Event

In order to obtain approval to serve alcohol at GGU-sanctioned events, whether held on- or off-campus, the following conditions must be observed:

  1. Persons hosting or sponsoring University-sanctioned events where alcoholic beverages will be served must attend an Alcohol Awareness Workshop through the Office of Student Affairs. Students of the law school must attend the Alcohol Awareness Workshop through the Law Student Support office.
  2. Persons requesting approval for serving alcoholic beverages at events sanctioned by GGU must complete and submit a Request for Approval to Serve Alcoholic Beverages at University and/or Law School Sponsored/Hosted Events.
  3. For University-sanctioned events where alcoholic beverages will be served and the attendees are predominantly or exclusively employees, approval must be obtained from the Director of Human Resources.
  4. For University-sanctioned events where alcoholic beverages will be served and the attendees are predominantly or exclusively students, approval must be obtained from the Dean for the Office of Student Affairs. In cases where an event is initiated by students of the law school, approval must be obtained from the designee within Student Affairs, Law School.
  5. The Dean for the Office of Student Affairs, the Associate Dean for Student Affairs, Law School, and/or the Head of Human Resources may impose whatever further condition(s) and/or restriction(s) they think necessary in order to ensure compliance with this policy.

Chemical Dependency

GGU believes chemically dependent persons can and should be effectively treated and rehabilitated. The University views this problem primarily as a disease that can be treated and not as reflective on the moral character of the employee or student. The primary goals are the restoration of the person to full physical and psychic health and their ability to function productively in personal and professional relations.

GGU encourages employees who suspect they have a chemical dependency problem, even in its earliest stages, to seek assistance through the Employee Assistance Program (EAP). Students may seek assistance through Wellness Resources in the Office of Student Affairs.

Disciplinary Procedures

  1. Standards of Conduct and Disciplinary Action for Employees
    The University strives to maintain a workplace free from the illegal use, possession or  distribution of controlled substances (as defined in Schedules I through V of the Controlled Substances Act, 21 University States Code 912, as amended). Unlawful manufacture, distribution, dispensation, possession, or use of controlled substances by University employees in the workplace or on University business is prohibited. In addition, employees shall not use illegal substances or abuse legal substances in a manner that impairs performance of assigned tasks.

    The Drug-Free Workplace Act of 1988 (Public Law 100-690, Title V, Subtitle D) requires that University employees directly engaged in the performance of work on a federal contract or grant shall abide by this policy as a condition of employment and shall notify the University within five (5) days if they are convicted of any criminal drug statute violation occurring in the workplace or while on University business. The University is required to notify the federal contracting or granting agency within ten (10) days of receiving notices of such conviction and to take appropriate corrective action, or to require the employee to participate satisfactorily in an approved drug-abuse assistance or rehabilitation program. Among the disciplinary sanctions that may be imposed on employees are: verbal warning, written warning, suspension, termination and referral for prosecution. The University may require completion of an appropriate rehabilitation program as a disciplinary sanction (See “Legal Sanctions”).
  2. Disciplinary Action Regarding Alcohol and Other Drug Use by Students
    The University has the authority to initiate disciplinary procedures that could result in suspension or expulsion from the University, loss of privileges, or any of a number of lesser sanctions for violation of the Student Code. The following conduct, as it relates to alcohol and other drugs, is prohibited on the University premises or at University-sanctioned events, wherever it may occur. (The same conduct, though occurring off University premises and not at University events may nonetheless be subject to University sanctions when it adversely affects the University, its educational mission or its community.)

Use, possession, sale, distribution or manufacture of, or the attempted sale, distribution, or manufacture of any drug - including alcohol - on University properties or at official University functions that is unlawful or otherwise prohibited, limited, or restricted by University policy or regulations.

GGU hearing proceedings do not preclude the referral of infractions to appropriate authorities for criminal investigation and prosecution. (See “Legal Sanctions”). Students of the law school who violate the GGU Alcohol Policy will be subject to the discipline process under the Standards of Student Conduct for the law school. Law students are encouraged to thoroughly review the misconduct section of the law school’s Standards of Student Conduct, as it further outlines prohibited behaviors that are often associated with the overindulgence of alcohol.

Legal Sanctions

The federal and state laws cited below are valid at the time of the production of this document and are subject to change without notice.

  1. Federal Laws
    Under federal law, the manufacture, possession, sale or distribution of illicit drugs, e.g., cocaine, methamphetamines, heroin, PCP, LSD, Fentanyl, and mixtures containing such substances, is a felony with penalties that include imprisonment, or imprisonment and severe fines. Federal laws also prohibit the trafficking of any of the above drugs, including marijuana, hashish, and mixtures containing such substances. Penalties include imprisonment and severe fines.

    Special provisions apply to the possession of crack cocaine, which include enhanced prison terms and fines.

    Distribution or possession with the intent to distribute a controlled substance on University property requires sentencing enhancement of up to twice the prescribed sentence for the original offense, and at least twice the prescribed amount of parole time.

    Persons convicted of possession or distribution of controlled substances can be barred from receiving benefits from any and all federal programs (except certain long-term drug treatment programs), including contracts, professional and commercial licenses, and student grants and loans. Health care providers are barred from receiving federal insurance program payments upon conviction of a criminal offense involving distributing or dispensing controlled substances. Property, including vehicles, vessels, aircraft, money, securities or other things of value which are used in, intended for use in, or traceable to transactions that involve controlled substances in violation of federal law are subject to forfeiture to the government. Finally, aliens convicted of violating any state, federal or foreign law or regulation are subject to deportation and exclusion from entry to the United States.
  2. California Laws
    No person may sell, furnish, or give, or cause to be sold, furnished, or given away, any alcoholic beverage to a person under age 21 or to any obviously intoxicated person. No person under age 21 may purchase alcoholic beverages or possess alcoholic beverages on any street or highway or in any place open to public view. It is illegal to sell alcohol without a valid liquor license or permit. It is unlawful for any person to drink while driving, to have an open container of alcohol in a moving vehicle, or for adults to drive with a blood alcohol content (BAC) of 0.08% or higher. Drivers under age 21 are prohibited from operating a motor vehicle if they have a BAC of 0.01% or greater. It is also illegal to operate a bicycle, water vessel, water ski, or aquaplane while intoxicated.

    Penalties for a first drunk-driving offense include attending a 3-month alcohol/drug program, fines up to $1,000 plus administrative costs, up to one year in jail, and driver’s license suspension up to one year. Second offenses are punishable by fines up to $5,000, imprisonment up to one year, driver’s license revocation for three years, and a required drug/alcohol program of up to 30 months. Third and fourth offenses carry similar sanctions, plus three- to five-year revocations of driver’s license. Driving privileges are suspended for one year for refusing to submit to a blood alcohol content test, for two years if there is a prior offense within seven years, and for three years with three or more offenses within seven years.

    Under California law, first offenses involving the sale or possession for sale of amphetamines, barbiturates, codeine, cocaine, Demerol, heroin, LSD, Mescaline, Methadone, Methamphetamine, morphine, PCP, peyote, Quaalude, psilocybin, or over one ounce of marijuana are felonies punished by imprisonment in the state prison. Marijuana of less than one ounce is a misdemeanor punishable by six months to one year in the county jail. Manufacture of illegal drugs will result in more severe prison terms and fines. Penalties are severe for offenses involving manufacture or distribution of illegal drugs by convicted felons and for distribution within 1,000 feet of a school or university, including distribution near recreational facilities, to anyone under 18, or to someone in jail or prison. Personal property used in drug transactions is subject to seizure. The mere possession of most of these drugs is a felony carrying severe prison sentences.

Review of This Policy

This policy will be reviewed by the University biennially to determine the policy’s effectiveness and implement changes to the program(s) if they are needed, and to ensure that the sanctions outlined in the policy are consistently applied.