Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Parent Notification Policies for Underage Drinking Evolve

The Washington Post

For years, Virginia Tech had a complicated system for deciding when to let parents know about their underage children's alcohol-related transgressions. Visits to the hospital or police station warranted immediate notification, but Mom and Dad didn't have to know about less-serious offenses, such as sneaking a six-pack into the dorm, unless it happened more than once.

But this semester, Virginia Tech joined a growing list of colleges that notify parents every time a student younger than 21 is caught drinking, drunk or in possession of alcohol. George Washington University also tightened its notification policy last year after a student died of alcohol poisoning.

Concerned about injuries, deaths, rising alcoholism rates and lawsuits, colleges and universities have realized that, in addition to levying official penalties, seeking parents' help can bolster anti-drinking efforts. Research shows that parents can have a significant influence on their children's drinking habits.

"Students are more concerned about their parents being notified than they are of the legal consequences," said Edward Spencer, vice president for student affairs at Virginia Tech.

Privacy laws prohibit university officials from communicating with parents about much more than tuition bills, but for more than a decade schools have had the legal authority to notify parents of students younger than 21 about alcohol- and drug-related matters. Many do so only for the most serious incidents. Others restrict parental notification to drug crimes.

Schools have found themselves in a delicate balancing act. Officials want to protect students' heath and honor parents' demands for information, but they also want to help students develop a sense of independence.

Kevin Williams said he didn't know that GWU notified parents of all alcohol violations until he was busted for hosting a Halloween party in his dorm room when he was a freshman in 2008. He received a $50 fine and had to go before a school judicial hearing but was relieved to learn that the incident would not go on his permanent record. About a week later, his mother called from New Jersey with a form letter from the school in hand and a lot of questions.

"It was not good," Williams said of the conversation. "She said: 'You're in college. I know you are going to be drinking. But are you going to be dumb and get caught?' "

Williams, now 20 and a sophomore, said he thinks parents should be notified if a student has a serious problem or is rushed to the hospital but "not if it's a minor getting-caught-having-fun-with-your-friends-on-Halloween thing."

Virginia Tech has long had some of the strictest alcohol sanctions in the region, including a three-strikes policy: two strikes for serious offenses, one for minor offenses. Students who rack up three or more strikes during their school careers are asked to leave for at least a semester.

The university decided to change its notification policy because officials had received complaints from parents who wanted to know whether their child had a drinking problem long before it got serious. The policy also applies to illegal drugs, including marijuana, but students caught with drugs are usually suspended.

Student body President Brandon Carroll said students were "shocked" when they heard about the new approach. Even though the university is legally able to share such information, that doesn't mean that it should, said Carroll, 21. "If the school calls someone's parent, that could put a lot of pressure on them. And how is that going to help?" he said.

College drinking is getting worse, according to researchers at the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism. Between 1998 and 2005, the latest period for which figures are available, binge drinking rates increased, more students drove drunk and the number of alcohol-related deaths increased more than 25 percent, from 1,440 to 1,825.

"The problem is not getting better, but I think it can be turned around," said Ralph Hingson, the director of epidemiology and prevention research at the institute. "Interventions at multiple levels make a difference."

The federal Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 prevents universities from sharing most student information, but it allows them to contact parents if a child's health or safety is at risk. In 1998, the act was amended to give colleges and universities permission to notify parents anytime a student younger than 21 had any alcohol or drug violation.

That legislation was introduced by then-Sen. John Warner after five Virginia college students were killed in alcohol-related incidents in fall 1997, prompting a state investigation. Three were Virginia Tech students who died in two incidents over Halloween weekend.

Deaths at other campuses also have resulted in policy changes and, sometimes, lawsuits. In 2000, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology paid $6 million to settle a wrongful-death lawsuit filed by the parents of a freshman who died of alcohol poisoning after a fraternity party in 1997.

Last year, a University of Kansas freshman died of alcohol poisoning less than two weeks after he was kicked out of campus housing for alcohol violations that his parents knew nothing about. Within months, the university began to notify parents about serious or repeat alcohol violations.

In 1997, the University of Delaware became one of the first schools to implement an "every time" notification policy. School officials say the policy, along with aggressive penalties and encouragement of Delaware alcohol treatment, has reduced binge drinking on campus and curtailed the university's party-school reputation.

GWU soon followed and enhanced the policy last year, after the death of a student. The school now contacts parents within 24 hours in a serious case and follows up with parents when the student begins an alcohol education program. For a less-serious case, they send parents educational materials.

In the past five years, several schools have joined the movement, including the University of Georgia in 2006 and the University of New Mexico in 2007. In 2008, Tennessee passed a state law that requires all public higher-education institutions to notify parents of alcohol violations.

"There is no magical line here between May of their senior year of high school and college. When do they really become a responsible adult?" said John Zacker, director of student conduct at the University of Maryland alcohol treatment, which notifies parents when a student's drinking threatens to get him or her kicked out of the dorms or school.

At the University of Virginia, students are usually given about 48 hours to call their parents before school officials do. The calls are made in the most serious cases, such as an arrest or hospitalization, or if a student shows an ongoing pattern of intoxication. But in most cases, Dean of Students Allen Groves said, he trusts his instincts.

"The easy thing to do is say, 'Here's a cookie-cutter process, and we are going to use this process the same way for every single case,' " Groves said. "But every case is not the same."

The effects of parental notification have not been widely studied, but the concept seems to work best when universities coach parents on how to react to the news, said Thomas Workman of the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators, who chairs a committee focused on alcohol education. Officials need to be mindful of family dynamics and cultural differences, he said, in the same way that a behavioral program such as Alcoholics Anonymous operates.

"We can't assume a parent knows what to do and that they would do the right thing," he said. But if approached in the right way, parents can be the perfect partners for an intervention, he said.

"Even with cellphone technology, no student would call home four or five times a day a generation ago," Workman said. "We have a very different generation. And it's smart of institutions to say, 'We should take advantage of that.' "

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Army Chief Blasts Alcohol Abuse

The Australian
EXCESSIVE alcohol consumption by soldiers is resulting in "near daily reports'" of officers and enlisted men being killed, injured or maimed for preventable behaviour, chief of the army, Lieutenant General Ken Gillespie has warned.

In a strongly worded admonition carried in the latest edition of the Army newspaper, a copy of which was received by The Australian today, an angry General Gillespie ordered officers to take punitive measures if necessary to restore order and discipline in the ranks.

The blast from the chief of army was prompted by a spate of recent arrests by police linked to 12-alcohol-related incidents over one weekend resulting in seven drink driving offences and five drunk and disorderly charges being laid.The actual dates were not given.

"I'm ashamed to say that this was not an atypical weekend.

"To be quite frank, I am sick of seeing the near daily reports which tell me of officers and soldiers killed, injured or arrested for behaviour that could have been avoided," General Gillespie said.

"I am tired of seeing the reputation of the army undermined by the irresponsible actions of some who cannot responsibly consume alcohol," he added. The army chief then proceeded to warn his officers to take more responsible and "proactive" steps to curb alcohol abuse."Written correspondence can only do so much.

"While I am directing you to take specific action now, you should be quite clear in your minds that I expect all commanders to proactively, and if necessary, punitively apply measures and alcohol rehab to reduce the incidence of alcohol misuse.

"I will take an interest in hearing what commanders have done during my visits in the future," General Gillespie  warned.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

College Environment Poses Risk for Underage Drinking

Collegiate Times

The expensive textbooks have been purchased, new roommates have moved in, and classes are underway: American students have recently commenced a new semester at their colleges and universities. When the exciting and overwhelming influx of new friends and classes has initially dwindled down, students — especially those living in a college environment — seek opportunities to escape from the stresses of college life. In a college town, this usually equates to attending parties and various social gatherings.

Of course, the majority of college students’ mentalities would be incomplete if the presence of alcohol was not involved in the social scene. Alcohol is a ubiquitous staple in the college environment, and young adults between the ages of 18-24 years old are most at risk for abusing the judgment-impairing drug. In a time when consumption of alcohol is accepted — and almost expected — among college students, we need to remember that young adults are incredibly vulnerable to the dangers associated with over-consumption of alcohol — a term referred to as binge drinking.

According to the National Institute of Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, a “binge” is a pattern of drinking alcohol that brings blood alcohol concentration to at least 0.08 percent or above. This pattern corresponds to consuming at least five drinks for a male adult and at least four drinks for a female adult in approximately a two-hour time span.

The consequences of excessive drinking affect virtually all college campuses, college communities, and college students: about four in five of all college students drink, including students aged 18 to 20, nearly 60 percent of whom drink illegally. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 90 percent of the alcohol consumed by underage youths is in the form of binge drinking. As mass marketing campaigns have perpetuated the glamorization of alcohol consumption, imagine the increase in these statistics as we begin this new decade!

We are not naïve to the potential outcomes of binge drinking. By simply tuning in to the news, we learn of unfortunate stories of young adults prematurely losing their lives in tragic, alcohol-related accidents. An increase in students who reported being charged of driving while intoxicated has resulted in an increase of alcohol-related deaths.

The CDC further describes the kinds of intentional and unintentional injuries that result from binge drinking, including sexual assault, date rape, firearm injuries, domestic violence, car crashes, burns and drowning. Other health problems resulting from binge drinking include alcohol poisoning, sexually transmitted diseases, unintended pregnancy, high blood pressure, stroke, liver disease, alcohol addiction and sexual dysfunction.

The college environment promotes this unhealthy behavior, particularly due to the availability and accessibility of alcohol on campuses. Furthermore, students who observe their peers engaging in binge drinking may be more willing to conform to the negative behavior if they perceive their peers to be enjoying themselves. Unfortunately, loss of inhibitions is a positively perceived effect of alcohol consumption, especially for the shy and introverted. However, alcohol no longer seems to be as enticing when you find yourself being the caretaker of a sick friend who is vomiting in the bathroom of a bar or club as a result of binge drinking. If you are lucky, your friend will sleep it off and fail to remember his or her actions from the previous night. For the not so lucky, your friend may require medical attention if alcohol poisoning were to occur.

Alcohol abuse is likely — and frequent — since society views drinking as a normal and accepted part of life, especially campus life. The consumption of alcohol is unquestionably a social activity, influenced by popular culture and media solely depicting — and oftentimes, fabricating — the positive effects of alcohol without taking into consideration the infinitely greater negatives.

As the new semester progresses into busy weeks teeming with assignments, projects, exams and friends, let’s keep in mind the dangers that binge drinking poses to the health of the millions of students in our nation’s colleges and universities.

The college environment isn’t going anywhere, and it would surely be devastating to hear another news story of an alcohol-related accident that claimed yet another youth’s life.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Alcohol, Violence Part of Canadian Soldiers' R&R

The Toronto Sun

When Canadian soldiers head home from Afghanistan, they are first given a week to "decompress" on the island paradise of Cyprus. But for many soldiers, this "decompression" is filled with alcohol abuse, arguments and violence, according to information revealed in military documents obtained by QMI Agency.

During the 150 days military members have spent on the island since the fall of 2006, Canadian soldiers have been involved in more than 100 incidents that required the intervention of military police. About 30 of these incidents were of a violent nature and at least 50 were caused by soldiers that were "intoxicated" by alcohol.

The military police reports, obtained through Access to Information laws, show that the soldiers, as soon as they arrive in Cyprus, quickly take advantage of the freedom they are given, opting to go drinking in groups at bars or heading off in search strippers or prostitutes.

These nocturnal escapades often land soldiers in locations where their presence isn't always appreciated by the locals. At least four times, Canadian soldiers were attacked or threatened by local groups that are often armed with pistols. In one July 2007 case, a soldier found himself with a 9-mm pistol pointed at his face after he had tried to locate reinforcements in a bar to help one of his comrades who was fighting with street bouncers.

The report indicated that the majority of incidents are directly linked to the consumption of alcohol by soldiers. Many soldiers abuse alcohol to the point where they fight each other over insults or they fight Cyprus locals that they have insulted or pushed around.

The most publicized case is that of soldiers Louis Pelletier and Guillaume Simon, who violently struck a British citizen living in Cyprus after having insulted and spit on his wife in March 2008.

The reports also showed several cases of misdemeanour crimes caused by drunken soldiers.

For example, one drunk and unhappy soldier broke down the door of a five-star hotel where the soldiers were staying.

Another broke into a Cyprus resident's home in the middle of the night for reasons that haven't been revealed.

Last March, a drunken soldier fell off his room's balcony on the first floor of the hotel but managed to escape with only a few injuries.

Drunk, soldier fights and breaks a window Feb. 12, 2007. At around 6 p.m. in a local bar, a soldier, very intoxicated by alcohol, fought with a Cyprus local. After being subdued by military police, the soldier punched the glass protecting a painting on the wall. He was injured. Many people tried to calm him, but he eventually lost consciousness. The report indicates that he was "strongly intoxicated". He was required to pay for the painting. Perhaps it may behoove the Canadian military to take action and institute a 'dry-out' alcohol rehab program.

Unwinding soldiers can create trouble

Threatened with a gun
July 28, 2007

A soldier was involved in an altercation downtown. He was hit by a street bouncer while he was trying to help a colleague who had been attacked in the street. He then wanted to get help from inside the unidentified establishment. Another street bouncer prohibited him from entering the establishment by showing him a 9mm pistol and asking him "if he had a problem". The reported indicated that there is "a group of street bouncers ... that patrol outside of district X." The report also said that the group has other groups (whose identity was blacked out).

A soldier taken hostage
July 31, 2007

Two roommate soldiers, during the decompression week, visited a Cyprus establishment to drink alcohol. Inside, one soldier fell asleep on a couch. Unable to wake his colleague, the soldier found himself alone and without money, with bar employees that demanded payment. "Accompanied by an escort armed ... with a pistol", he was asked to pay if he wanted the sleeping soldier to be released. He then returned to the hotel to get money.

Six against 50
Mar. 1, 2008

A group of Cyprus residents tried to stir things up in a bar by name-calling and pushing around Canadian soldiers. "When they exited the establishment, a group of people, more than 50, named the XXXXXs, were waiting to beat them up outside. The Canadian soldiers would have had no chance because of the number of assailants," said the report. The soldiers were forced to flee after the fight started.

Fight for a cigarette
Sept. 21, 2008

At midnight, a fight broke out between a Cyprus resident and a Canadian soldier when the soldier told the person to "pay attention with his cigarette". The Cyprus resident replied by hitting the soldier in the face. The two men fought on the ground and other residents and soldiers got involved until bar employees separated them. The soldier was treated for his injuries but didn't file a complaint.

Soldier attacked taxi driver
Oct. 4, 2008

At 4 a.m., a soldier, returning from a night out by taxi, was seen by other soldiers trying to hit a taxi driver while he was holding onto him through the open window of the vehicle. The soldier didn't want to pay the total amount for the ride, maintaining that he already done so and owed the driver nothing. Another soldier paid the amount asked for by the driver, who left without making a complaint.

Soldier called a "fag"

At about 10 p.m., two groups of soldiers in a bar got into a fight after a soldier from one group refered to another soldier as a "fag". The fight started inside the bar and then moved outside into the street. Military and local police were forced to intervene. A soldier was injured and treated in hospital.

More fighting
Mar. 27, 2009

At about 1:30 a.m., two soldiers involved in a fight the night before needed to be separated after they began to fight, again, in a bar. One of the soldiers was holding his colleague by the head and was repeatedly hitting him in the face. The military police believe that the two men arranged to meet up to finish their fight from the night before. However, the victim said he had hadn't consented to fight and had simply gone to talk outside of the bar.

And again...
Mar. 27, 2009

At around 3 a.m., three soldiers involved in the previous night's fight decided to confront one of their opponents hotel room, as a group. They knocked on the door, forced their way in and pushed one soldier to the ground before jumping on the other, who was held down while another soldier hit him repeatedly in the face. The three attackers fled and were then interrogated by military police.

Drunk, he falls from the first floor
March 27, 2009

In the middle of the afternoon, a soldier suffered a one-story fall from the balcony of his hotel room to the ground floor. He was injured. The report stated that he was so "intoxicated" that he either fell by accident or on purpose. He also lost his wallet.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Opinion: Deal with Addiction

Florida needs leaders who will address the growing public health crisis that is substance abuse. To date in Florida, both alcohol and drug abuse are treated largely as a criminal justice issue, but that is an unsustainable, unaffordable and fundamentally unhelpful approach that does almost nothing to change behaviors so costly to society.

"We need to get rid of the stigma," said Mark Fontaine of the Florida Alcohol and Drug Abuse Association. "Substance abuse needs to be front and center as a health care issue."

Mr. Fontaine, along with Ellen Piekalkiewicz of the Florida Substance Abuse and Mental Health Corp. and Leon County Commissioner Bryan Desloge, met with the Tallahassee Democrat Editorial Board this week to advocate for a multipronged, community-based approach for addressing substance abuse in our state.

Resetting current policy to address this public health issue, which severely affects our criminal justice system including county jails, will take the dedication of statesmen willing to reframe the arguments and address the ramifications caused by substance abuse and its serious economic costs.

In local communities, public health groups must come together to develop models that support community-based care at every step, from prevention and early intervention through ongoing recovery. Individually, addressing substance-abuse issues will take candor in admitting that every person knows someone (or knows someone who knows someone) who has battled with a drug and or alcohol addiction.

Bottom line, bottom dollar

Although drug abuse and alcohol rehab and abuse made a $43 billion annual impact in Florida by robbing the state's economy of viable workers and production and adding to health care, law-enforcement and other costs, there are few resource exclusively committed to addressing the issue.

An excise tax on alcohol, stagnant since 1999, has been swept into the state's general revenue fund instead of being used (like money from the state's tobacco settlement) to address alcohol-abuse related issues.

Most city and county budgets, including ours in the capital city, lack provisions to specifically address drug abuse, and end up paying the price in wholesale incarceration and some temporary treatment of individuals who grapple with addiction. As Mr. Desloge said Tuesday, Leon County spends $30 million to run the jail and $30 million for the sheriff's office, and the city spends about $40 million for the police department — but how much less the figures might be if well more than half of jail inmates weren't housed for addiction-related violations. They belong in treatment programs such as alcoholics anonymous.

Continuing to operate at such high costs without isolating and addressing the root causes cannot continue. Yet diversionary and treatment programs aren't politically popular in our lock-'em-up state, and candidates or sitting lawmakers likely wouldn't see a return on their investment during their short terms in office.

With redirected funds, Leon County could better address local need — as with a recent addiction treatment program at Bond Community Health Center and Apalachee Center. Our law-enforcement officers do benefit from training to recognize substance-abuse issues when they apprehend a subject — another step wise application of our resources.

It starts with you

But legislation, spending reform and the promotion of centers equipped to deal with the needs of the addict are only parts of the solution. To truly advance viable alternatives, individuals must come forward and acknowledge their support for such changes.

Ms. Piekalkiewicz reminds us that substance abuse "is on every street, it's in every community," yet at every turn, this public health pandemic is treated with silence, shame and anonymity.

As Mr. Fontaine pointed out, with substance abuse, there is no "Walk for Recovery," no well-orchestrated campaign to battle it.

The first step to encouraging our lawmakers to revisit current policies is to express community support for such a change. It can begin with the simple admission that we know someone who struggles, and we are committed — with our votes, our time and our dollars — to changing the final impact on our communities and our economy by speaking up.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Actor Torn Ripped Again

Examiner Detroit

Actor Rip (Elmore) Torn, age 79, was taken into custody at the Litchfield Bancorp and booked on charges including illegal possession of a handgun while intoxicated, first-degree burglary, first-degree criminal trespassing and third-degree criminal mischief. He is currently being held on $100,000 bond and is scheduled to appear Monday in Bantam Superior Court according to reports from The Associated Press.

A resident of Salisbury, CT, where he lives with third wife actress Amy Wright, Torn has appeared on television, the stage and big screen. He has won numerous awards for his work in all three media, but is, perhaps, most recognized by the younger generation for his role as in the Men In Black films starring opposite Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones. He is also an accomplished painter and video artist.

Despite this, Torn has been deeply troubled by alcoholism. He was arrested in New York City in January 2004, after his car collided with a taxi. He was arrested again for drunk driving in North Salem, New York in December 2006 after colliding with a tractor-trailer. In April 2007, Torn pleaded guilty and had his drivers license suspended for 90 days and was required to pay a fine of $380 and needed alcohol rehab.

Another arrest occurred on December 14, 2008, when Rip Torn was picked up on suspicion of drunk driving. A bartender at the White Hart Inn in Salisbury, is reported to have served the actor, but apparently noticed he appeared intoxicated as he was leaving the establishment, according to a police report. Torn reportedly refused a ride home and got into his vehicle and drove away. He was convicted and sentenced to probation in May 2009. Torn was given probation in the drink-driving case and granted permission to enter an alcohol education program with alcoholics anonymous.
Alcohol abuse can have serious consequences that impact every system in the body, causing a wide range of health problems such as poor nutrition, liver diseases (including cirrhosis and hepatitis), high blood pressure, muscle weakness, irregularities with heart rhythm, anemia, clotting disorders, decreased immunity to infections, gastrointestinal inflammation and irritation, acute and chronic problems with the pancreas, low blood sugar, high blood fat content, interference with reproductive fertility, and weakened bones, as well as memory loss and difficulty with balance.

In addition, a special report prepared for the U.S. Congress by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, illustrates its severe effect on society as a whole, including "violence, traffic accidents, lost work productivity, and premature death, costs our nation an estimated $185 billion annually. It is also estimated that approximately one in four children (19 million children or 29% of children up to 17 years of age) is exposed at some time to familial alcohol abuse, alcohol dependence, or both."

Monday, February 1, 2010

Stanford Expands Efforts to Curb Alcohol Abuse

San Francisco Chronicle

Stanford's successful effort to exempt itself from Santa Clara County's new rules on underage drinking has put a focus on the university's growing effort to curb alcohol abuse on campus.

 The county's new ordinance, which took effect last year, makes it easier for police to cite anyone hosting a party where underage drinking occurs. It can mean a fine of up to $1,000 plus costs anytime the police are called in.

About 95 percent of Stanford's 6,600 undergraduates, many of them younger than 21, live on campus in university-owned housing. As the landlord, the school could have found itself facing plenty of potential liability under the new county rules.

But the financial question didn't play a role in the university's attempt to persuade county officials to free Stanford from the regulations, said Jean McCown, the school's director of community relations.

"We already have a significant commitment to curbing underage drinking and require that on-campus parties be registered," she said. "We were concerned that the county rules would send those parties underground and out of sight."
Student deaths

Campus drinking is a growing concern at universities and colleges across the nation. A study released last year by the National Institute of Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism found that there were 1,825 alcohol-related deaths among 18- to 24-year-old students in 2005, the last year with available figures.

Those include not only the rare but widely reported alcohol-poisoning deaths linked to out-of-control parties and fraternity hazing, but also the drunken-driving crashes and falls that claim many more lives.

While Stanford has never had an alcohol-poisoning death on campus, its students aren't immune to the problems that arise from heavy drinking.

"We get students cited on campus every weekend," said Ralph Castro, director of the university's Substance Abuse Prevention Project.

In the 2008-09 academic year, 44 underage students were taken to a hospital emergency room because of alcohol abuse. Seventy-three were arrested for possession of alcohol by a minor, 13 for being drunk in public and five for being a minor driving under the influence.

To combat campus drinking and encourage alcohol rehab at Stanford, university officials have for the past four years required each incoming freshman to take a three-hour online course on alcohol abuse. Groups hosting parties have to register them with the school and provide the name of the person in charge.

"When (the ordinance) came up at the Board of Supervisors last year, we brought them information about our programs," McCown said. "We asked them to watch us for a year and see how it worked."

Stanford received a 12-month stay of the new law last year and then worked with the county to do what was needed for a permanent exemption.

"We already had a program on board that our students understand and believe in," Castro said.

But with the shadow of increased county regulation hanging over the university, Stanford toughened its alcohol policies.

Tighter policies

Move-in day for resident students was moved a week closer to the first day of school, trimming the number of party-hearty nights before classes begin. Stanford police boosted their presence on nights when parties were scheduled. A few on-campus fraternities were temporarily banned from having alcohol at parties because of incidents of underage drinking last year.

The effort worked. Last Tuesday, Santa Clara County supervisors unanimously approved a new version of the ordinance that "explicitly exempts officers and agents of institutions of higher learning."

There's drinking, legal or not, on every college campus, and Stanford is no exception, according to alcoholics anonymous. Students 21 and older are allowed to have alcohol in their rooms and the university cops aren't tossing the rooms of younger students to search for illicit booze, Castro said.

"We treat students as adults," he said. "Our fundamental standard is that students will do the right thing. But if they don't, there are consequences."