July 2014

Through its Medical Amnesty Policy, Bucknell University encourages its students to seek and/or call for assistance for themselves or others when someone is overly intoxicated and is in need of medical assistance. Amnesty is available to the student calling as well as the student needing assistance. A call for assistance should be made promptly because the health, safety and well-being of the student that is potentially in danger is paramount. A call for assistance may be directed to Bucknell Public Safety (BUPS), a local police officer or agency (such as Buffalo Valley Police Department or by calling 911), the Dean-on-Call, or in the residence halls, the RA. Bucknell's goal through this amnesty policy is to reduce barriers and alleviate potential consequences to insure that our students seek the appropriate and necessary assistance.

A student for whom a call for assistance is made will not be subject to official sanctions and conduct record under the Student Conduct process, nor will the individual who made the call. Likewise, when leadership of a recognized student organization makes a call for assistance for a student attending the organization's function, the organization will not be subject to university code of conduct sanctions, nor will the student who made the call.

Results arising from a call for assistance will be determined by the Student Conduct Administrator. The educational outcomes may include but are not limited to:

  • Referral to the Alcohol and Other Drugs Counselor through the Counseling and Student Development Center for an alcohol assessment to be completed within 35 days.
  • Parental, guardian or emergency contact notification
  • Educational opportunities to assist in avoiding future high risk situations
  • A summary report of the incident to be included in the student's or student organization's file.

Important Information Regarding Amnesty

  • If a student is repeatedly the subject of calls for assistance, there may be additional consequences as a result of the University's increased concern for that student, including additional counseling sessions, educational follow up with university administrators and/or a full behavioral assessment which may lead to a university mandated withdrawal.
  • Failure to complete appointments or follow-up as prescribed by a university official could result in the revocation of amnesty for the student or organization in question and standard university sanctions could apply.
  • Amnesty does not prevent the filing of criminal charges.
  • Amnesty may not apply to students who persistently refuse to cooperate with medical, law enforcement or university personnel at the time of initial contact.
  • A student organization that fails to seek assistance for a member or guest in need at its function or on its controlled property may be charged with violations of the Student Code of Conduct. It is paramount that organizations seek assistance in any emergency situation.
  • This Policy applies only to those students or organizations who seek emergency medical assistance in connection with an alcohol-related medical emergency and does not apply to individuals experiencing an alcohol-related medical emergency who are found by University employees. (i.e. Public Safety Officers, Faculty, administrative staff, residence hall staff including RA's).

This policy is also available as a pdf (Bucknell University Medical Amnesty Policy).


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