Alcohol, Drugs, the Law, and You

Alcohol and Drug Abuse Policy

The University of Arkansas at Little Rock is com­mitted to the principle of a drug-free environ­ment and feels an obligation to help eradicate alcohol and other drug abuse on our campus and beyond. The University provides a drug pre­vention program accessible to students and em­ployees and complies with the standards set forth by the Drug-Free Schools and Communi­ties Act Amendments of 1989.

The Board of Trustees of the University of Arkansas Policy 705.2, USE OF ALCOHOLIC BEVERAGES ON UNIVERSITY FACILITIES, states as follows:

“Possession and use of alcoholic beverages in public areas of University facilities (including organized houses) and at official University student functions held on campus must follow state and federal laws and university policies at all times. Each campus shall establish policies to be approved by the Chancellor regarding the use of alcoholic beverages on and off campus for student and non-student events. Other units of the University designated by the President shall develop such policies for approval of the President.

Irresponsible behavior while under the influence of alcoholic beverages is not condoned and may be subject to review and/or action by the appropriate judicial body. The Board directs each campus to develop an alcohol awareness and use policy, which shall be made available to its new and continuing students each fall.”

Some applicable Arkansas laws

  1. No person under the age of 21 may legally consume or possess alcohol in Arkansas.
  2. It is illegal to be so intoxicated in a public place that you are likely to endanger yourself or others or be unreasonably annoying to others. This is a class C misdemeanor, (with a class A as the most serious), and may result in fines and incarceration.
  3. Driving a motor vehicle with .08% or more blood alcohol content is a class A misdemeanor that, in addition to incarceration and heavy fines, will result in a suspension of driving privileges from 120-180 days for the first offense. Driving with a license suspended for DWI may result in incarceration for ten days and a $1,000 fine. Refusing the chemical test for blood alcohol content may result in a 180-day suspension of driving privileges for the first offense. In the event of an accident involving a fatality, a blood alcohol content of .08% or higher may result in a charge of manslaughter, even though the driver did not set out to intentionally harm anyone.
  4. A person under the age of 21 operating a motor vehicle with .02% but less than .08% blood alcohol content commits the offense of Underage Driving Under the Influence. The penalties include suspension of driving privileges for up to 120 days for the first offense, fines up to $500, public service work at the discretion of the court, and mandatory attendance at an alcohol and driving education program.
  5. Arkansas statutes 5-27-501 through 503 are aimed at preventing persons under 21 from using altered identification to purchase alcohol. Manufacturing, altering, or distributing altered personal identification for this purpose is a Class C Felony punishable by up to ten years in prison. Possessing altered identification is a class B misdemeanor punishable by up to 90 days in jail and revocation of driving privileges for up to 12 months or age 18, whichever is shortest.
  6. Possession of more than four ounces of marijuana or possessing it in a form to facilitate distribution is a felony offense. Possession of any usable amount of any other illegal narcotic is a felony. The penalties range from probation to life in prison. In an effort to combat the manufacture of methamphetamine, legislation was enacted to control ephedrine, pseudoephedrine, and phenylpropanolamine. Possession of more than five grams of ephedrine or more than nine grams of pseudoephedrine or phenylpropanolamine is a felony and prima facie evidence of the intent to manufacture methamphetamine. These substances are often found in over-the-counter sinus medications and diet pills.

Standards of Conduct

  1. The University expects students, employees, and groups to be free of the influence of con­trolled substances; to refrain from the use of con­trolled substances on University premises or re­lated premises, or at a University activity. Employees of the University are expected to refrain from activities involving controlled substances both on and off campus, where such activities could have a detrimental impact on their abilities to perform their jobs. Persons may generally not drink or dispense alcoholic beverages, be under the influence, or possess alcoholic beverages on Uni­versity premises or at functions or activities con­trolled by the University. Persons 21 years and over may possess and consume alcoholic bev­erages in the privacy of assigned rooms in the residence halls, uni­versity-owned apartments and houses, at the Stephens Event Center, and other authorized locations. The Stephens Event Center is authorized for the legal sale of alcohol per the University of Arkansas Board Policy 705.2, and alcohol may be dispensed and consumed there pursuant to the issuance of a permit by the Alcohol Beverage Control Board. Violation of expected standards of conduct may result in appropriate student discipline and employee discipline up to and including suspension or termination.
  2. Any student, employee, or group who gives or transfers controlled substances to another per­son or sells or manufactures a controlled sub­stance while on campus or related premises will be subject to appropriate student discipline or employee discipline up to and including ter­mination or suspension, and/or referral to the au­thorities for prosecution. In addition, any employee who engages in the above-described activities off campus and whose activities impede their ability to effectively perform their employment shall be subject to appropriate discipline.
  3. Any student, employee, or group found to be in violation of federal, state, or local narcotic or controlled substance laws on University pre­mises will be subject to appropriate student discipline or employee discipline up to and in­cluding suspension or termination.
  4. Students, employees, and groups whose be­havior and/or conduct is a result of alcohol or other drug misuse/abuse on campus or as a part of any University activity may be required to undergo, at their own expense, a pre-assessment (screening) at an appropriate agency identi­fied by the University. The welfare of the student or employee comes first and discipline may be deferred or dismissed depending upon the severity of the violation.
  5. Any containers of beer, wine, or distilled spir­its that are being transported in a private au­tomobile must be sealed and covered while on University premises.

University sanctions for violating alcohol and drug policies

Sanctions for violations of University poli­cies, regulations, guidelines, and local, state, or federal laws may include but are not limited to: appropriate rehabilitation programs, expul­sion, suspension, termination of employment and/or referral to authorities for prosecution, counseling, job reassignment, University or pub­lic service, educational projects, restitution or fines, withdrawal from classes or pro­bation. Disci­plinary sanctions for the illegal sale or distribu­tion of controlled substances may subject the offender to sanc­tions up to and including expulsion, suspension, termina­tion, and/or referral for prosecution. For spe­cific definitions of sanctions and procedures for handling disciplinary actions for students and employees, refer to faculty, staff, and student handbooks.

Health risks of drug and alcohol use

Illicit drugs as well as alcohol and other drugs have various effects on the body and mind. The initial, short-term effects may be positive feelings like alertness, optimism, self-confidence, energy, or stress relief. These positive feelings and reactions are the primary reason drugs have appealed to so many for so long. However, the secondary, long-term, negative effects far exceed the initial positive effects.

Effects of use on the body

  • mood swings/impaired judgment
  • depression/mania
  • sleep disturbances and irritability
  • increase in aggressive or combative behavior
  • heart and/or breathing difficulties/death
  • increased susceptibility to bacterial and viral infections
  • liver damage

Signs that indicate a person is becoming dependent on a substance

  • Increased tolerance – takes more and more to get the desired effect (this increases the risk of overdose)
  • Changes in relationships with friends and family
  • Withdrawal symptoms such as nausea, shakiness, headaches, convulsions, hallucinations, etc.
  • Psychological dependence – thinking that using a substance will help them get through the day

UA Little Rock does not discriminate on the basis of disability in admission, employment, or access to its programs and activities in accordance with section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and Title I and II of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1991 (ADA). Under ADA, current illegal drug use is excluded from the definition of disability when a “covered entity” acts on the basis of such use. The definition of “individual with a disability” does include persons who are in or who have completed a supervised drug rehab program or have been otherwise rehabilitated and are no longer using drugs.



The process of providing information concerning the negative aspects of drug use and abuse to students and employees is conducted through the classroom, self-help groups, literature, and campus-wide activities. Educational activities in the classroom are provided on undergraduate and graduate levels. Health Services provides free literature, handouts, one-on-one information sessions and referrals for employees and currently enrolled students. Counseling Services provides individual counseling and referrals for currently enrolled students. The University provides an annual Alcohol/Drug Awareness Week to educate the campus population in the areas of substance abuse, risk reduction, and self-assessment.


The office of Counseling Services provides individual counseling and referrals for currently enrolled students. Free confidential assistance is available to all UA Little Rock employees through the Arkansas Employee Assistance Program (EAP). Self-help groups such as Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous meet in the community.


Referrals to private and public facilities, outpatient and inpatient institutions, and individual practitioners can be provided by Counseling Services and Health Services.

Helpful Numbers

Resource phone number
Employee Assistance Program 501-686-2588
UA Little Rock Counseling Services 501-916-3185
UA Little Rock Health Services 501-916-3188
UA Little Rock Police Department 501-916-3400
Alcoholics Anonymous 501-664-7303
Narcotics Anonymous 501-373-8683
Central Arkansas Veterans Health Care 501-257-1000

updated October 2021