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ERIC Number: EJ783423
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2007-Dec-21
Pages: 1
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-0009-5982
More Colleges Offer "Amnesty" for Drinking Violations
Hoover, Eric
Chronicle of Higher Education, v54 n17 pA1 Dec 2007
Under-age drinkers will do almost anything to stay out of trouble. Sometimes they won't even call 911 in an emergency, says Meghan Hanrahan, a junior at Ohio University. That's why she believes administrators should waive judicial punishments when intoxicated students seek medical help for themselves or their friends. Ms. Hanrahan, a student at the university's main campus, in Athens, and a member of Ohio's Student Senate, helped establish a committee to study the feasibility of "medical amnesty." In recent years, dozens of colleges have adopted medical-amnesty exemptions, also known as Good Samaritan policies. The provisions derive from state laws that shield people from liability claims when they help an injured stranger. Proponents say removing the threat of punishment for alcohol violations raises the chance that a student will call an ambulance or resident assistant if, for instance, a roommate passes out after one too many beers. In turn, the policies may help campus health counselors find students who need continuing treatment. So far, however, there is scant research on whether the strategy works. Some student-health professionals even worry that the policies condone under-age drinking and hinder campus efforts to curb alcohol abuse. The issue reveals the inherent tension between upholding the law and ensuring students' well-being.
Chronicle of Higher Education. 1255 23rd Street NW Suite 700, Washington, DC 20037. Tel: 800-728-2803; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Greece (Athens); Ohio