Unreasonable alcohol policy

The Minnesota Daily reported Wednesday that alcohol violations in the residence halls on campus were up 115 from 92 at a similar time during the previous year. Sources in the article blamed the freshman Welcome Week, but what is more alarming is how the University has changed its definition of an alcohol offense. According to the UniversityâÄôs âÄúdry room code,âÄù students who are not drinking but are in the proximity of alcohol are in terms of a violation. This University policy is blatantly unfair and even unsafe for University students. Residence hall drinking violations rose 40 percent the past two school years, up to 4,235 violations from 3,023. This was mainly in part due to the rule changes the University began to enforce. When violations are issued, they are frequently handled by residence hall staff and are rarely turned over to the police. The policy change by the University is unsafe. For responsible students who might be a designated driver for his or her friends, but at the same time is in violation of code, seems to contravene the mission of protecting the studentsâÄô well-being. While our freshman orientation acknowledges through various skits and activities that alcohol will be prevalent in college life and tries to demonstrate how freshmen can coexist safely in its presence, parts of the âÄúdry room codeâÄù take away from the whole effort. The rule does not take into effect the fact that alcohol will be prevalent in the dorms, no matter what the University attempts to force upon its students. University officials should acknowledge that there will be alcohol present in dorms, and should give students all the resources it can in helping them make safe decisions in its presence, while at the same time not punishing students who already do.