Date: February 2, 2024

To: All South Orange County Community College District Faculty and Staff

From: Dr. Cindy Vyskocil,

Vice Chancellor of Human Resources

Annual Update: Drugs and Alcohol Policy

Each year we are required by law to provide an update on the District’s Drugs and Alcohol Policy. Drug and alcohol abuse are pervasive and serious social issues. In order to mitigate the effects of drug and alcohol abuse on our working and learning environment, our Board of Trustees has adopted Board Policy 3550, Drug-Free Environment and Drug and Alcohol Abuse Prevention Program. As we all begin a new spring semester with intentions and goals of doing our best to contribute toward student success, it is vital that we reaffirm our commitment to maintaining an environment free of the abuse of alcohol and other drugs. We request that you take the time to review our current policy, which states:

The District shall be free from all unlawful possession, use, or distribution of illicit drugs and alcohol by students and employees. The unlawful manufacture, distribution, dispensing, possession, or use of a controlled substance is prohibited on District property, during District-sponsored field trips, activities or workshops, and in any facility or vehicle operated under the control and use of the District.

Any student or employee who violates this policy will be subject to appropriate action, up to and including termination of employment, expulsion, and referral for prosecution; or, as permitted by law, may require satisfactory participation in an alcohol or drug abuse assistance or rehabilitation program. The Chancellor or designee shall ensure that the District annually distributes to each student and employee the information required by the Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act Amendments of 1989 and complies with other requirements of the Act.

The Chancellor shall establish regulations that describe the District’s drug and alcohol abuse prevention program.

Health risks associated with the use of illicit drugs and/or the abuse of alcohol:

  • Health problems include hangovers, blackouts, general fatigue, impaired learning, dependency, disability and death.
  • Personal problems include diminished self-esteem, depression, alienation from reality, and suicide.
  • Social problems include loss of friends, academic standing, co- and extracurricular opportunities, alienation from and abuse of family members, and chronic conflict with authority.
  • Economic problems include loss of job, financial aid eligibility, homes, savings and other assets.
  • Legal problems include loss of driver’s license, limitations on career choices, fines and jail sentences.
  • Alcohol or other drug abuse addiction or dependency is a behavioral/medical problem.

This policy sets the standards for dealing with the reality of alcohol and other drug abuse. In order to help employees and their families who may be suffering with an alcohol or drug problem, the District’s medical plans provide coverage for treatment or drug and alcohol addictions. The District also offers an Employee Assistance Program (EAP). This help is confidential, and is available by calling the 24-Hour Helpline at 1-855-775-4357.

More information can be easily found at the Employee Benefits page.

The distribution of this information is required by the Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act Amendments of 1989 and complies with other requirements of the Act.