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SAFER Campuses

“[T]he science is clear that alcohol is more dangerous than marijuana.” 

Dr. Aaron M. White, Duke University Medical Center
"The Teen Drinking Dilemma," Newsweek, June 25, 2007
 

According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism’s Task Force on College Drinking, alcohol use contributes to approximately 1,400 student deaths, 50,000 student injuries, and 70,000 reports of sexual assault and date rape among college students each year. Medical research shows there has NEVER been a marijuana overdose death in history, and every objective study on marijuana has found that it does NOT contribute to violent or aggressive behavior.

If the use of marijuana poses less harm to college students and their surrounding communities than the use of alcohol, why are students punished more for using marijuana? Why do we have campus marijuana and alcohol policies designed to steer students away from marijuana and toward drinking? Universities are under NO legal obligation to punish students for marijuana use, and they should NOT be sending the dangerous message that alcohol use is more acceptable.

It's time our nation's colleges and universities stop teaching students to "drink responsibly" and start teaching them to "party responsibly."

SAFER has worked with college students around the country to introduce and pass campus measures that highlight the fact that marijuana is safer than alcohol and urge universities to stop punishing students more for making the safer choice. The Chronicle of Higher Education featured a story on SAFER's campus campaigns in 2006.  Click HERE to read the story!


Are you a college student or organization interested in working with SAFER on your campus?  If so, please click here and let us know more about yourself and the school you attend. We will be sure to get in touch with you ASAP! 

SAFER Executive Director Mason Tvert is a frequent guest speaker in college classrooms and at campus events in Colorado and around the country. Please contact us  if your class or organization is interested in bringing him to your college to discuss SAFER's work, spread SAFER's message and generate discussion on marijuana laws, policies, and efforts to reform them. 

 * * *

A history of success working with students
 
on campuses around the country: 

 

2005

Colorado State University (CSU)

Colorado State University

Fort Collins, CO
Undergraduate enrollment:  ~ 20,000
Referendum approved: 56-44

  • Students qualified referendum for ballot via petition
  • Referendum campaign was covered extensively in the campus and local newspapers, as well as in the Denver Post, Rocky Mountain News, and Washington Times

  

University of Colorado-Boulder (CU)University of Colorado-Boulder (CU)

Boulder, CO
Undergraduate enrollment: ~ 24,500
Referendum approved: 68-32

  • Students qualified referendum for ballot via petition
  • Referendum campaign was covered extensively in the campus and local newspapers, as well as in the Denver Post, Rocky Mountain News, and Washington Times
  • SAFER representative followed up with meetings with CU administrators and testimony before CU Board of Regents and Boulder City Council

  

Alcohol in College Towns (ACT) Now Conference

Fort Collins, CO

  • SAFER staff attended the event, placed this flyer in the hands of every attendee, and left SAFER literature mixed in with other pamphlets and articles regarding alcohol and violence
  • Security removed SAFER staff from the premises
  • The action generated news coverage, such as this story in the Rocky Mountain Bullhorn (10/21/05)

 

2006

 

Florida State University (FSU)Florida State University (FSU)

Tallahassee, FL
Student organization: FSU NORML
Undergraduate enrollment: ~ 31,500
Referendum approved: 60-40

  • Students qualified referendum for ballot via petition

 

University of Maryland (UMD)University of Maryland (UMD)

College Park, MD
Student organization: NORML TerpsUMD SSDP
Undergraduate enrollment: ~26,000
Referendum approved: 67-33 

  • Students qualified referendum for ballot via petition
  • Referendum campaign resulted in a major story in the Washington Post
  • Students followed up with successful resolutions through student government and campus housing board, and an official letter from a Maryland state representative encouraging administrators to follow the will of the students 

 

University of Texas-Austin (UT)University of Texas-Austin (UT)

Austin, TX
Undergraduate enrollment: ~37,000
Referendum approved: 64-36

  • Students qualified referendum for ballot via petition
  • Referendum campaign resulted in a major story in the Dallas Morning News

  

 Violence Goes to College Conference

Boulder, CO

  • SAFER applied and was granted a table at this conference dedicated to exploring alcohol use and violence on college campuses, but at the last minute SAFER was informed it would not be allowed to participate
  • SAFER staff attended the event, placed this flyer in the hands of every attendee, and left SAFER literature mixed in with other pamphlets and articles regarding alcohol and violence

 

Fighting the 420 Snitching Program

Boulder, CO

  • University of Colorado and Boulder City police conducted an operation on the traditional marijuana holiday of April 20th ("4/20") in which they photographed students taking part in a pro-marijuana rally, placed the photos on-line, offered reward money to students who could identify them, and issued punishments to those students who were identified.
  • SAFER organized an event in which a prominent national civil rights attorney came to campus and informed students of their rights 
  • Three CU students hired the civil rights attorney and threatened the university with a federal civil rights lawsuit 
  • To our knowledge, no student ended up receiving school sanctions for their involvement in the rally 
  • The University of Colorado and Boulder police departments announced they would no longer engage in such practices at future 4/20 rallies
  • News stories regarding the ordeal were featured in newspapers around the country and in Time magazine, and SAFER's executive director was interviewed live on MSNBC and Fox News Channel

 

2007

 

George Washington University (GW) George Washington University (GW)

Washington, DC
Student organization: GW NORML
Undergraduate enrollment: ~11,000
Resolution approved: 11-7

  • Student senators introduced
  • Campus newspaper (GW Hatchet) endorsed resolution and published news story 
  • Resolution vetoed by student government president, who vowed to work with students on alternative proposal

 

University of WashingtonUniversity of Washington (UW)

Seattle, WA
Student organization: UW NORML/SSDP
Undergraduate enrollment: ~31,000
Referendum approved: 65-35

  • Students qualified referendum for ballot via petition

 

University of ArkansasUniversity of Arkansas (U of A)
Fayetteville, AR
Student organization: NORML U of A
Undergraduate enrollment: ~14,500
Resolution defeated: 8-13 (10 senators abstained)

  • Student senators brought forward resolution
  • Resolution received extensive coverage in campus newspaper, including an editorial in favor of the resolution and critical of opponents

 

"420" Day of Education

50 colleges and universities nationwide, including schools in:
AR, AZ, CA, CO, DC, FL, GA, IL, IN, KS, MD, MO, MT, NC, OH, OK, OR, PA, TN, TX, VA, WI, and WA
Student organizations: NORML and SSDP chapters, individual students and independent organizations
Notes:

  • Students on 50 campuses spent the day wearing SAFER "Cannabis/Can o' beer" T-shirts and distributing more than 10,000 SAFER stickers and 20,000 flyers with information on the relative harms of marijuana and alcohol
  • Project generated substantial news coverage and positive editorials in local and campus newspapers around the country

 

2008

University of Central Florida (UCF)University of Central Florida (UCF)

Orlando, FL
Student organization: NORML@UCF
Undergraduate enrollment: ~41,500
Referendum approved: 57-43

  • UCF Senate placed referendum on campus ballot
  • Campus newspaper (Central Florida Future) endorsed referendum and published news story
  • Both student government president-vice president tickets endorsed referendum
  • Task force consisting of student sponsors, student leaders and administrators meeting to discuss guidelines for new marijuana and alcohol penalties

 

College of DuPage (CoD)College of DuPage (CoD)

Glen Ellyn, IL
Undergraduate enrollment: ~29,000
Referendum approved: 67-33

  • Student government placed referendum on ballot

 Ohio State University (OSU)

Columbus, OH
Student organization: OSU SSDP
Undergraduate enrollment: ~38,000
Referendum approved: 60-40

  • Students qualified referendum for ballot via petition

 

P.O. Box 40332 – Denver, CO 80204 – Phone: 303-861-0915 – mail@saferchoice.org