Policy on Demonstrations, Protests, and Vigils on Campus

Hendrix College, Campus Safety and Security
Policy # 04100
Effective: Wednesday, September 5, 2018

The purpose of this procedure is to establish the standards governing Demonstrations, Protests, and Vigils held on the Hendrix College Campus.

Additional Authority

Students, student organizations, faculty, and staff at Hendrix College. 

Responsible Party

Department of Public Safety and the Office of Student Affairs

1. Statement

Students, student organizations, faculty, and staff at Hendrix College are free to examine and discuss all questions of interest to them and to express opinions publicly and privately. They should always be free to support causes by orderly means that do not disrupt the regular and essential operation of the College or community. At the same time, it should be made clear to the academic and larger community that students or student organizations, and individual members of the faculty or staff, speak only for themselves, not for the College as an institution, in their public expressions or demonstrations.

Hendrix College does not allow disruptive behavior at community events or on campus. Disruptions may include purposely blocking the view of others at the event; banners or items that block the audience's view; noise or action that disrupts the ability of the audience to hear (e.g., shouting out or use of a bullhorn), or disrupting essential operations of the College.

If an event or essential operation is disrupted by a group or individual, a representative of the College may request the action to stop or ask the person or group to leave the event or area and move to an approved location for protesting. Individuals or groups who disrupt an event or essential operation, or who fail to leave when asked, are in violation of the College's policies related to disorderly or disruptive behavior as found in the Hendrix Student Handbook. These violations of College policy may result in College discipline. Disruption may also result in arrest and criminal charges such as disorderly conduct or trespass.

The campus of Hendrix College is private property. For specific events and during specific times of the year, Hendrix College invites the public to join us at events and extends free speech and expression privileges during these events. Any individual or group who disrupts an event or essential operation, and who is unwilling to respect College policy or to comply with the requests of College officials, will be asked to leave Hendrix College property. Failure to comply may result in arrest for unlawful trespass or other criminal violations.

2. Regulations for Demonstrations, Protests, or Vigils

Anyone who wishes to stage a demonstration, protest, or vigil on College property must contact and arrange a meeting with Student Affairs and Public Safety to discuss College policy, event-specific regulations, and safety issues, and must submit an appropriate Demonstration, Protest, or Vigil Request Form as described below. 

The Office of Student Affairs and Department of Public Safety should be consulted in the planning of all organized demonstrations or vigils, in order to register the demonstration with other pertinent College offices.

The desire of Hendrix College is to promote intellectual inquiry and exchange in a respectful and civil manner. The safety of all participants is of utmost importance to the College, and policies may be enacted to ensure safety during the event.

 Event sponsors, in conjunction with the Executive Vice President of Student Affairs and Dean of Students, Campus Events, the speaker or performer, and the Department of Public Safety, will determine the following for any demonstration or vigil approved on campus: Location, Time and Duration, and Manner. In order to appropriately accommodate and assist the organizers in their proposed event, the event sponsor(s) must submit a Demonstration, Protest, or Vigil Request Form  48 hours before the proposed event and submit it to the Dean of Student Affairs Office or Director of  Public Safety. In unusual situations, the 48-hour requirement may be shortened by agreement of the Dean of Students and the Director of Public Safety, but all other requirements of this policy must be met.

If the event requires outside security or additional public safety personnel in addition to regularly-scheduled personnel, the cost of this added security will be the responsibility of the event sponsor(s). 

3. Location

The location of an approved demonstration, protest, or vigil will be determined following space and use guidelines for College areas managed by Campus Events and other offices, and in accordance with this policy.

If the planned demonstration or vigil is considered a protest against an issue at another approved College event, the location of an approved demonstration, protest, or vigil will be as proximate to the other event as deemed appropriate considering the following:

  • Nature of the other event
  • Security needs of the other event
  • Time of the other event
  • Any other necessary considerations

4. Time and Duration

Demonstrations, protests, or vigils may not interfere with the academic, educational, or essential operational functions of the College. The time and duration of the demonstration, protest, or vigil will be determined with regard to the following:

  • Nature of the event and/or the demonstration, protest, or vigil
  • Security needs of the event and/or the demonstration, protest, or vigil; any additional cost above usual security staffing is the responsibility of the event sponsor. Public Safety will initially determine security needs based upon the information provided on the Request Form, will schedule or hire the necessary personnel, and may modify the need assessment at any time and for any reason. This assessment will be made in consultation with the requestor.
  • Time of the event and/or the demonstration, protest, or vigil

Any other necessary considerations

5. Manner

Demonstrations and vigils must occur in the approved defined location (if and when a location is determined), and may not block access to the venue in which another event is being held.  Demonstrations utilizing pickets, large items, bullhorns, or other loud or amplified sound-making devices are usually confined to the exterior of buildings so as not to disrupt the regular and essential operations of the College or create health and safety issues. Demonstrations with a noise level that disrupts other authorized activities on the College campus violate College policies.

Connection to the College's utilities (power, etc.) must be approved in advance (during the weekday) by the Director of Facilities Management.

Individuals distributing materials such as leaflets, pamphlets, or similar materials must be respectful of others' viewpoints and must allow people to decline to receive such materials. Event sponsors must remove all items and materials at the end of the demonstration, protest, or vigil.

Event participants are not allowed to use intimidating tactics or unwelcome physical contact between demonstrators, counter-demonstrators, the audience, the speaker or performers, or College officials.

The use of chalk on buildings or other structures, except for sidewalks a safe distance from doorways, is strictly prohibited to prevent damage to the structure and injury to anyone stopping at entrances or exits. Participants may not mark or use trees or College structures to support or display signs, messages, materials, or equipment without prior approval of Facilities Management.

Use of any open flames will require disclosure on the Demonstration, Protest, or Vigil Request Form and will require specific approval from the Dean of Student Affairs.

Note: Any of these demonstration, protest, or vigil standards can be applied to any location, including within an approved event space.  

6. Event Sponsor Responsibilities

Within the guidelines of this protocol, event sponsors will determine the appropriate guidelines for entry to an event, will send an email announcement of these guidelines to the College community, and will post the guidelines at the event entrance. (Examples of entry guidelines and information: time doors open, restricted items, tickets or Hendrix ID if needed to control capacity, etc.) The host is responsible for making arrangements with Facilities Management and Public Safety to establish entry and exit points for the demonstration, protest, or vigil to maintain control of the event they are hosting. The event sponsor(s) will monitor the entry to ensure that the guidelines are being followed and will address any issues or questions related to the entrance guidelines. When behavior at an event is disruptive, the sponsors should always attempt to gain cooperation by asking that the disruptive behavior stop prior to requesting that the person or persons leave the event. The sponsors may also decide to contact Public Safety about the disturbance or behavior.

7. Essential Operations

Within the guidelines of this protocol, "essential operations" are operations necessary for the daily functioning of the College, are part of the educational mission, and which cannot be easily moved to another location.

8. Public Safety Protocol

Public Safety will make contact with the sponsors at any event before handling any situation of nonviolent behavior, unless the disruption necessitates action to prevent greater confrontation. Public Safety has the authority to respond to acts of violence, threats of violence, or overcrowding without first contacting the event sponsors. In all cases where time permits contacting the event sponsors, Public Safety will contact the event sponsors to determine whether the behavior is, in fact, disruptive to the event or essential operations. If Public Safety has been contacted by the sponsors or appropriate College official and asked to deal with a person or persons creating a non-violent disturbance, Public Safety will always start by asking the person or persons to stop the disruptive behavior prior to asking the person or persons to leave the event or area.

Public Safety will notify the Conway Police Department of developing protests and demonstrations that reach beyond the control of the Public Safety Department.

9. Request Form

 Please submit this form at least 24 hours before the proposed event to either the Office of Student Affairs or the Department of Public Safety. 


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