Court Finds Mandatory Drug Testing of College Students Unconstitutional

For Immediate Release

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ACLU, media@aclu.org
Daniela Velázquez, ACLU of Missouri, dvelazquez@aclu-mo.org, 314.669.3424

Court Finds Mandatory Drug Testing of College Students Unconstitutional

State Technical College of Missouri No Longer Allowed to Require Testing of Incoming Students

ST. LOUIS -

A federal appeals court today found that requiring college students to take a drug test as a condition of enrollment violates the U.S. Constitution.

The ACLU of Missouri and the national ACLU’s Criminal Law Reform Project filed a class-action lawsuit against Linn State Technical College (now known as State Technical College of Missouri) on behalf of several students who were required to take a drug test in order to remain enrolled, even though the College had no reason to believe that the students were abusing drugs and no documented problems with drugs in the college’s 50-year history.

 “We shouldn’t treat students seeking to better their lives through education with immediate suspicion,” said ACLU of Missouri Legal Director Tony Rothert. “Under the Fourth Amendment, every person has the right to be free from an unreasonable search and seizure—including college students.”

The Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals upheld an injunction issued by the trial court prohibiting the College from implementing this unconstitutional policy.

"Students should not be required to sacrifice their constitutional rights in order to further their education, and we're thrilled that the court has permanently struck down the policy,” said Jason Williamson, senior staff attorney at the ACLU's Criminal Law Reform Project, and co-counsel on the case. “Our victory should serve as a warning to colleges and universities across the country: mandatory, suspicionless drug testing of the entire student body is inefficient, ineffective, and grossly unconstitutional.”

Read the decision: http://bit.ly/2hdH0Oi  

This news release is online here: https://www.aclu.org/news/court-finds-mandatory-drug-testing-college-students-unconstitutional

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The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) conserves America's original civic values working in courts, legislatures and communities to defend and preserve the individual rights and liberties guaranteed to every person in the United States by the Constitution and the Bill of Rights.

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