Alcohol and Drug Use in the Workplace Policy

Alcohol and Drug Use in the Workplace Policy


Office of Human Resources


Assistant Vice President for Human Resources


Human Resources



Effective Date:


Implementation History:


Alcohol, Drugs, Substance, Abuse

Background Information:


Informs employees of the college’s policy of prohibition of drugs, alcohol and substance abuse in the workplace.    




In compliance with the Federal Drug Free Workplace Act of 1988, the Drug Free Schools and Communities Act of 1998 and the New York State Policy on Alcohol and Controlled Substances in the Workplace, the Empire State College policy prohibits the unlawful manufacture, distribution, dispensing, possession, or use of a controlled substance and the abuse of alcohol by students and employees on college property (including property leased or rented by Empire State College) while on duty, in a state vehicle, a vehicle leased or rented for state business or a private vehicle being used for state business during employees' work hours or as part of the college’s activities.

New York State prohibits on-the-job use of, or impairment from, alcohol and controlled substances. The State of New York Policyon Alcohol and Controlled Substances in the Workplace provides that upon “reasonable suspicion” a supervisor may require an employee to undergo a medical examination, which could include a drug and alcohol test.

State of New York employees are also subject to criminal, civil, and disciplinary penalties if they distribute, sell, attempt to sell, possess or purchase controlled substances while at the workplace or while performing in a work-related capacity. Such illegal acts, even if engaged in off duty, may result in disciplinary action.

Employees who unlawfully manufacture, distribute, dispense, possess or use a controlled substance will be subject to disciplinary procedures consistent with applicable laws, rules, regulations and collective bargaining agreements including termination of employment or referral for prosecution. Other corrective action may include satisfactory participation in an approved drug or alcohol rehabilitation program.

Any employee convicted of a violation of a criminal drug statute for a violation occurring in the workplace or at a work site must notify in writing the Office of Human Resources no later than five (5) calendar days following the conviction. The college will notify appropriate federal agencies of such a conviction within ten (10) days of receiving notice of the conviction.

Alcohol and substance abuse are serious problems and diminish the quality of services the college delivers. Additionally, the personal toll to individuals, families and communities is staggering.

An employee may be directed to undergo medical examination and/or testing under Section 72 of the NYS Civil Service Law at the expense of Empire State College, if the supervisor suspects that the employee is not able to perform their duties as a result of alcohol or controlled substance related disabilities.

Employees may also be referred to the New York State Employee Assistance Program (EAP). EAP is a joint labor-management committee program open to all State employees and their families. The program is a confidential information, assessment and referral program that provides employee requested services including assessment for referral to the most appropriate community resource provider for services related to emotional or physical illnesses, alcohol and other drug-related problems.

Any state employee may contact the New York State Employee Assistance Program at 1-800-822-0244.

Compliance with the provisions of this policy is a condition of employment with the Empire State College.

Applicable Legislation and Regulations

Drug Free Schools and Communities Act of 1989

Federal Drug Free Workplace Act of 1988

New York State Policy on Alcohol and Controlled Substances in the Workplace

Related References, Policies, Procedures, Forms and Appendices