Drug- and Alcohol-Free Workplace

Brandeis University is a drug-free workplace. It is the university’s intent to provide a safe and drug- free work environment for students and employees.

The unlawful manufacture, distribution, dispensation, possession or use of illegal drugs or alcohol (consistent with federal, state and local laws) by any person is prohibited in or on Brandeis premises, in vehicles owned by Brandeis, at any work site or location at which university duties are being performed or as part of any Brandeis activities.

In addition to any actions taken by law enforcement authorities, the university will take disciplinary action against violators, including but not limited to referral for prosecution; requiring satisfactory participation in a substance-abuse treatment, counseling or education program as a condition of reinstatement or continued employment; and termination of employment.

Brandeis University acknowledges that there may be university-sponsored events where alcoholic beverages are served; in these cases, it is an employee’s responsibility to engage in appropriate conduct when consuming alcohol.

This policy statement is designed to address the university’s concerns about substance abuse and to ensure that Brandeis University complies with the federal Drug-Free Workplace Act of 1988 and Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act Amendments of 1989.

Any employee who is convicted of a violation of any criminal drug law occurring in the workplace must report that conviction to his or her immediate supervisor, the Office of the Provost or the Office of Human Resources within five days of such a conviction. Failure to comply with this requirement is a separate violation of this policy and may subject the individual to sanctions specified above.


This policy applies to all Brandeis employees, including staff, faculty, postdoctoral fellows, temporary employees and affiliates. For information related to students, see the student “Rights and Responsibilities” handbook.


As of December 2016, adults (21 years of age or older) in Massachusetts are permitted to grow and/or possess small quantities of marijuana for personal recreational use. As a recipient of federal funding, Brandeis University must comply with current federal drug laws that still classify marijuana as a controlled substance. Accordingly, the university continues to prohibit the growth, manufacture, distribution, dispensation, possession, sale or use of marijuana and any other illegal narcotic or drug paraphernalia.