Macalester College

Location: Saint Paul, Minnesota
Website: http://www.macalester.edu
Type: Private
Federal Circuit: 8th Circuit

Speech Code Rating

Macalester College has been given the speech code rating Red. A red light university has at least one policy that both clearly and substantially restricts freedom of speech. Read more here.

At present, FIRE has not been involved in any cases at this school.

Red Light Policies

  • Student Handbook: Campus Policies and Protocols- Facebook and Social Networking

    Speech Code Category: Internet Usage Policies
    Last updated: February 24, 2016

    Students accessing “social networking services” such as Facebook, MySpace, Blogger, Twitter, and others should carefully read the terms and conditions set forth by such services. … In addition to violation of College policy, the posting of inappropriate material may subject students to criminal and civil penalties. As referenced in the terms and conditions of these networking services, students should refrain from posting material that is deemed to be criminal; harassing; racially, sexually, ethnically or religiously objectionable; defamatory; obscene; invasive of another’s privacy; or infringing of copyright.

    » Read More

  • Sexual Misconduct Policy

    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies
    Last updated: February 24, 2016

    Sexual Harassment includes unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, offensive comments or other conduct based on sex, sexually motivated physical contact, or other verbal, nonverbal, or physical conduct or communication of a sexual nature, including sexual violence, when: …

    • such conduct has the purpose or effect of substantially and unreasonably interfering with an individual’s employment or education, or of creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive employment or educational environment

    At Macalester, sexual harassment includes any sexual or gender-based verbal, written, or physical conduct that is unwanted and/or unreasonably interferes with or deprives someone of academic, social or work-related access, benefits, or opportunities in the College community or creates an environment that interferes with the wellbeing and/or success of an individual.

     

    Two primary types of sexual harassment:

    1. Hostile Environment: Includes any situation in which there is harassing conduct that is sufficiently severe, pervasive/persistent and patently/objectively offensive that it alters the conditions of education or employment, from both a subjective (the victim’s) and an objective (reasonable person’s*) viewpoint.

    Other examples of sexual harassment:

    Not all workplace or educational conduct that may be described as inappropriate affects the terms, conditions or privileges of employment or education. Some examples of sexual harassment include, but are not limited to:

    • Requests for sexual favors.
    • Punishing a refusal to comply with a sexual-based request.
    • Offering a benefit (such as a grade, promotion, or athletic participation) in exchange for sexual favors or other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature
    • Verbal abuse of a sexual nature or obscene language.
    • Gender- or sexually-oriented jokes and comments.
    • Displaying derogatory or sexually suggestive pictures or other objects in an office, on the exterior of a residence hall door, or on a computer monitor in a public space.
    • “Rating” individuals’ bodies and sex appeal, commenting suggestively about their clothing and appearance, or other verbal commentary about an individual’s body.
    • Visual conduct such as leering or making gestures.
    • Gossip about sexual relations.
    • Unwelcome sexual flirtations, attention, or advances.

     

     

    » Read More


Yellow Light Policies
  • Harassment or Bias Incident Online Report Form

    Speech Code Category: Policies on Bias and Hate Speech
    Last updated: February 24, 2016

    This form should be used to report any event believed to have been hate- or bias-motivated and that happened to you at Macalester College or in the Twin Cities area. Your responses can be anonymous unless you chose to include identifying information on this form. … Nature of Incident (check all that apply): Derogatory jokes or comments based on a social identity (race, religion, sex, ability, religion, etc.) ….

    » Read More

  • Student Handbook: Publicity/Posting

    Speech Code Category: Posting and Distribution Policies
    Last updated: February 24, 2016

    Individuals and/or groups will be held accountable for postings that are not respectful of Macalester College community standards.

    » Read More

  • Student Affairs: Harassment Prevention and Support

    Speech Code Category: Policies on Bias and Hate Speech
    Last updated: February 24, 2016

    What is a bias-related incident?

    Bias-related incidents refer to language, images or behaviors that demonstrate bias against another person based on but not limited to his or her membership in a group, based on race, ethnicity, national origin, sex, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, disability, age, religion, or an individual’s particular characteristics, role, or behavior.

    Expression of ideas or points of view that may be offensive or inflammatory to some, may not necessarily be a bias-related incident. The College does value freedom of expression and the open exchange of ideas. This value of openness protects controversial ideas, but it does not protect harassment or expression of bias or harassment aimed at individuals that violate college policy.

    What is harassment?

    When these acts are intended to harm an individual or have the purpose or effect of unreasonably or substantially interfering with an individual’s safety and security by creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive educational or working environment they can be defined as harassment. These acts defined as harassment may be based on a person’s identity characteristics or they may not.

    What are some examples of bias-related incidents or harassment?

    Depending on the totality of the circumstances, writing a racial epithet in erasable marker on someone’s dry-erase board, making fun of another person because of his or her language or accent, or making insulting comments about someone’s traditional manner of dress or geographic origin are hypothetical examples of a bias-related incident. Additional examples include stalking or threatening a person, sending unwanted or intimidating packages, letters, computer messages, text messages, telegrams, or phone calls, particularly if the intent is to harm or intimidate.

     

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Green Light Policies
  • Student Handbook: Student Rights, Freedoms and Responsibilities- Preamble

    Speech Code Category: Advertised Commitments to Free Expression
    Last updated: February 24, 2016

    Macalester College exists for the transmission of knowledge and the pursuit of truth. Free inquiry, free expression and responsibly free activity are indispensable to the attainment of these goals.

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  • Student Handbook: Student Rights, Freedoms and Responsibilities- Expression and Inquiry in Campus Activities

    Speech Code Category: Advertised Commitments to Free Expression
    Last updated: February 24, 2016

    Students and student organizations are free to examine and discuss all questions of interest to them and to express opinions publicly and privately.

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  • Student Handbook: Campus Policies and Protocols- Harassment

    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies
    Last updated: February 24, 2016

    In general, harassment includes any verbal, written, or physical conduct that unreasonably interferes with or deprives someone with academic, social or work-related access, benefits, or opportunities in the College community. Harassment that is directed at a person’s actual or perceived race, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, religion, disability or any other characteristic or behavior is prohibited at Macalester.

    Hate incidents may also be a form of harassment. Hate incidents are words or actions that target, threaten, or attack an individual or group because of their actual or perceived race, color, national or ethnic origin, religious affiliation, gender, disability, or sexual orientation. It becomes harassment when these words or deeds unreasonably interfere with or deprive someone of educational access, benefits, or opportunities.

    For a behavior to be termed as harassment, it must be pervasive and constitute a pattern and/or degree of severity that the behavior reasonably interferes with or deprives the targeted person of employment, educational access, benefits, or opportunity.

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  • Speech Code of the Month: Macalester College

    July 5, 2006

    FIRE announces its Speech Code of the Month for July 2006: Macalester College. As a private university, Macalester is not bound by the First Amendment. It is, however, bound by the contractual promises it makes to its students. Macalester’s Student Handbook provides that “[t]he relationships between Macalester College and its students is a legal and contractual one…. The legal and contractual relationship is defined in the Handbook, as well as the College Catalog and other official documents of the institution.” The Student Handbook promises Macalester students the rights to “free expression” and “free inquiry,” and provides that “[s]tudents and student […]

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