Compliance, Ethics and Risk Oversight Committee discusses changes and potential modifications to University policies

Alan Vargas

Graphic by Sam Chaney

The Compliance, Ethics and Risk Oversight Committee met on Thursday, Aug. 30 in Hicks Hall to discuss changes to the Student Code of Conduct, the Statement of Ethical Conduct and various policies relating to Signage and the Distribution of Printed Materials. The Committee also discussed including student workers in the Title IX policy.

University Conduct Officer Rachel Winter gave an executive summary of the changes to the Student Code of Conduct. Winter went through a list of changes that were made, and highlighted a number of areas that were in need of update. For example, stalking was moved to harassment from the sexual misconduct section because stalking isn’t always sexual in nature. The hazing section was expanded and updates were made to comply with Title IX. The policy also added discrimination as a violation and added the authority for the University President to “emergency suspend” a student. These changes were made to fix issues with the policy that were made apparent by a situation last year involving a white supremacist on campus.

The Committee didn’t have the full version of the Student Code of Conduct but voted to allow the posting of the Code for public comment. The plan is to post the Code tomorrow and schedule a public forum shortly thereafter. After public comments are collected, President David Szymanski will review the Code and, if he approves it, it will be voted on by the Board of Trustees in October.

The Committee then discussed the Freedom of Expression in Outdoor Areas of Campus policy that is replacing the Use of Amplified Sound policy.

According to UNF Senior Counsel Marc Snow, the new policy was updated to recognize the entirety of the University as a Free Speech Zone but also added new requirements for groups larger than 50 to notify the University prior to their event. It also requires that anyone using amplified sounds must also notify the University, otherwise, they will be removed or relocated. The policy also requires that signs be removed after 24 hours around campus.

“If someone is loud enough to disrupt an ongoing class or the concentration of a faculty member in their office, then that disturbance should be stopped. A faculty member should intervene and ask the person to lower their sound or stop,” Everett Malcolm affirmed. “UPD should be our last resort. 99.9 percent of the time when you explain the policy to them, they apologize and lower their sound.”

Finally, the Committee discussed a potential update to Title IX, which is a federal civil rights law that seeks to prevent discrimination. The update would require all student workers to comply with Title IX, which requires all federal employees to report any issues of discrimination.

Previously only student housing employees were required to report issues. Some of the concerns would be the high turnover of student employees and confidentiality. The

The Committee is considering the update and will post it for public comment through Osprey Update.

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