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SPU is subject to the requirements of the federal Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act and the Drug-Free Workplace Act. SPU is committed to maintaining a drug-free workplace and strongly supports the Acts. SPU annually distributes information regarding University policies that prohibit illegal drug use, health risks associated with drug use, and potential sanctions for violations of law and University policy. Any employee who has not received copies of the statement should contact the office of Human Resources at 330 West Nickerson.

The purpose of SPU’s Alcohol, Tobacco, and Drug Use Policy is to support the educational mission of the University with standards of personal health, moral integrity, and social consciousness, as well as to satisfy the requirements of the Acts.

Conduct involving alcohol consumption or drug use that creates risks for one's safety, threatens the safety of others, detracts from the living-learning community, or disrupts the university community (either on or off campus) is a violation of SPU's policy and may result in disciplinary action. Illegal, underage consumption and/or possession of alcohol will not be permitted either on or off campus.


  1. SPU encourages employees to make choices about the off-campus use of alcohol with discernment and to be guided by the teachings of their families and churches.
  2. The University does not permit employees to use alcohol or tobacco at any time on University property, or as part of any University sponsored event on or off campus. For those faculty or staff whose personal residence is on University property (except those living in Residence Halls supervising student housing) this on-campus prohibition does not apply to the consumption of alcohol in the privacy of their home.
  3. Employees shall refrain from drinking with undergraduate students or where undergraduate students are expected to be present.
  4. The University prohibits in its workplace the unlawful manufacture, distribution, dispensation, possession, or use of a controlled substance. A "controlled substance" means any drug or substance for which the use, distribution, dispensation, or possession of is controlled by criminal statute or regulation. However, proper use of medication prescribed by a licensed physician shall not constitute a violation of this policy.
  5. Even though Washington State decriminalized marijuana possession under 1 oz. for adults over age 21, it is still illegal under federal law to possess, use, or distribute any amount of marijuana. Possession, use, or distribution of any amount of marijuana at any time is also not permitted for employees under University policy.


Abiding by the University’s Alcohol, Tobacco, and Drug Use policy is a condition of employment. Violation of this policy by an SPU employee may result in disciplinary actions which could include verbal counseling, written warning, withholding of wage increases, suspension with or without pay, demotion, or other appropriate sanctions up to and including termination of employment. An employee who, while on SPU property or at any University sponsored activity, exhibits objective signs of being under the influence of intoxicating beverages or illicit drugs may be placed on immediate leave until the University completes its review of the matter. If the observed behavior is a result of drug abuse or alcohol use, the employee will be subject to further disciplinary action, up to and including termination. If the abnormal behavior resulted from prescription drug use in compliance with a physician's instructions, the University's sick pay policy applies.

The unlawful manufacture, distribution, dispensation, possession, or use of a controlled substance by employees will be grounds for immediate disciplinary action, up to and including termination of employment and referral for criminal prosecution.

All employees must notify the University of any drug or alcohol criminal conviction. The University must be notified within five days after such conviction. Notice should be given to the director of Human Resources.

Supervisors should not attempt to diagnose alcoholism, drug dependency, or any other complex physical, mental, or emotional problem, but they should identify, document, and attempt to correct all employee job performance and/or work behavior problems, if appropriate.

The supervisor should immediately document any violation of this policy. The documentation should be forwarded the same day to the area vice president, with a copy to the Office of Human Resources.

If an employee is required to complete a drug or alcohol treatment and rehabilitation program as part of the disciplinary action resulting from a violation of this policy, official records of the diagnosis or treatment will be kept for at least three years, separately from the standard personnel file, by the director of Human Resources. The file will be held in confidence and will only be used as evidence to governmental and granting agencies that the University did in fact take steps toward correcting the problem.