Bottoms up

The University of Minnesota-Duluth is planning on implementing a new policy that would encourage students to report drinking-related medical emergencies by protecting them from legal consequences, according to a March 1 Associated Press article.

This amnesty plan will take effect next fall and students who call on an authority figure would not face legal charges and neither would the afflicted students, the article stated.

Other colleges, such as College of William & Mary in Williamsburg, Va., have also implemented this program, but it also requires students to have a record of the incident on their files, meet with administration and receive education on the matter.

This is a good idea if it’s enacted correctly, because even though there will still be a record on file, at least the help will be provided in time.

The program would have to provide the same legal punishment as if they were caught by the police, minus the fine.

However, if not enforced correctly, it could also increase underage drinking, as some students might feel less worried about getting caught.

The program needs to be taken seriously by students because it’s promoting safety and it encourages people to act responsibly. It is designed to give a peace of mind to those students that didn’t want to help another student just because they didn’t want to make their friends or themselves face legal punishments.

If the decisive factor to call or not call the police in the first place lies in not getting in trouble, then this program should show students the school will help them, but they should also be responsible.

This program should not be seen as a college playground for underage drinking. People should still be conscious of their intake when they drink.