Student Organizations Conduct & Policies
The links and information below are for University and CSU policies that are applicable to recognized student organizations on campus.
- Student Organization Handbook
- Student Organization Conduct Policy
- Non-Discrimination & Open Membership
- Alcohol and illegal drug
- Time, Place & Manner Policy
- Student Organization Conduct Board
- Banking Policy
- Use of University Name & Logo
- Organization Misconduct & Collective Responsibility
- Employer Recruiting Policies
Student Organization Handbook
The SAE Student Organization Handbook documents current SF State policies and procedures, including liability, safety and security, event planning, fundraising and much more. The Handbook is a guide and resource for all student organizations and University departments.
Student Organization Conduct Policy
The Office of Student Conduct (OSC) at San Francisco State University supports the University's educational purpose and goals set forth by interpreting and enforicing the standards of student behavior, including Recognized Student Organizations.
Non-Discrimination & Open Membership
As a condition of recognition, all student organizations must comply with the California State University’s non-discrimination and open membership policies outlined in Executive Order 1068 for recognized student organizations. Below are excerpts from CSU Executive Order 1068.
Non-discrimination: No campus shall recognize any fraternity, sorority, living group, honor society, or other student organization that discriminates on the basis of race, religion, national origin, ethnicity, color, age, gender, marital status, citizenship, sexual orientation, or disability. The prohibition on membership policies that discriminate on the basis of gender does not apply to social fraternities or sororities or other university living groups.
Open membership: No campus shall recognize any fraternity, sorority, living group, honor society, or other student organization unless its membership and leadership are open to all currently enrolled students at that campus, except that a social fraternity or sorority or other university living group may impose a gender limitation as permitted by Title 5, California Code of Regulations, Section 41500. Student organizations may require applicants for leadership positions to have been members for a specified period of time, and may require officers to compete for those positions in elections of the membership.
The State of California and San Francisco State University have expressly and repeatedly asserted their opposition to hazing and pre–initiation activities which do not contribute to the positive development and welfare of new members. Whether on or off campus, planned or spontaneous, California law makes it a criminal offense for anyone to participate in hazing. Students are entitled to be treated with consideration and respect. No individual shall perform an act that is likely to cause physical, psychological or social harm to any other person within the University community on or off campus.
The following actions are expressly forbidden:
- Physical abuse, commonly known as hazing, including, but not limited to, paddling, slapping, kicking, choking, scratching and exposure to extreme water temperatures, (i.e. cold or hot showers);
- Excessive mental stress, including, but not limited to, placing of prospective members of a group or organization in ambiguous situations which lead to confusion and emotional stress;
- Verbal abuse, including, but not limited to, shouting, screaming, or use of derogatory, profane or obscene language.
Defining Hazing and ConsequencesSEC. 3. 245.6.
- This section shall be known and may be cited as "Matt's Law" in memory of Matthew William Carrington, who died on February 2, 2005 as a result of hazing.
- As used in this section "hazing" or "haze" is conduct which causes, or is likely to cause, bodily danger, physical harm, or personal degradation or disgrace resulting in physical or mental harm to another person in the course of the other person's preinitiation into, initiation into, affiliation with, holding office in, or maintaining membership in any organization. The terms "hazing" or "haze" do not include customary athletic, fire department, police department, military, or quasi-military training, conditioning, or similar events or activities.
- Any person who hazes or conspires to participate in hazing is guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by a fine of not less than one hundred dollars ($100), nor more than five thousand dollars ($5,000), or imprisonment in the county jail not to exceed one year, or by both fine and imprisonment.
- Any person who hazes or conspires to participate in hazing which results in death, great bodily injury, or great psychological injury is guilty of a felony punishable by imprisonment in the state prison.
- An organization is guilty of violating subdivisions (b) or (c) if the organization's agents, directors, trustees, managers, or officers authorized, requested, commanded, encouraged, participated in, ratified, or tolerated the hazing.
- The implied or expressed consent of the person or persons against whom the hazing was directed shall not be a defense to any action brought under this section.
- This section does not apply to the person against whom the hazing was directed.
- This section shall not, in any manner, limit or exclude prosecution or punishment for any other crime or any civil remedy.
- The person against whom the hazing is directed may commence a civil action for injury or damages, including mental and physical pain and suffering that results from the hazing. The action may be brought against any participants in the hazing, or any organization whose agents, directors, trustees, managers, or officers authorized, requested, commanded, encouraged, participated in, ratified, or tolerated the hazing. If the organization is a corporation, whether for profit or not, the individual directors of the corporation maybe held individually liable for damages.
University Consequences for Hazing
Should the university become aware of such abuses on the part of the student organization or any of its members, the University will immediately suspend the organization indefinitely pending the results of the University’s internal investigation. The organization/group will also be referred to the District Attorney’s Office. In the event the charges are substantiated, the University will invoke appropriate corrective action against the individuals as well as the individual group or organization involved.
Alcohol and Illegal Drugs
San Francisco State University expects the campus community as well as external groups to be aware of all state and local laws with reference to possession, serving and consuming of alcohol; to inform decisions about alcohol and drug use; and to be responsible for the consequences of those decisions.
Current California Law-Alcohol
- Every person who sells, furnishes, gives or causes to be sold, furnished or given away, any alcoholic beverage toany person under the age of twenty-one years is guilty of a misdemeanor. (California Business and Professions Code, 25658)
- Every person who sells, furnishes, gives, or causes to be sold, furnished or given away, any alcohol beverage to any habitual
or obviously intoxicated person is guilty of a misdemeanor. (California Business and Professions Code, 25602)
The sale, manufacture, distribution, use, or possession of illegal drugs is against San Francisco State University policy. This policy applies equally to all administrators, faculty, staff and students.
University Administrative Sanctions for Violation of the Illegal Drug Policy
- The manufacture, use or possession of illegal drugs* by a member of the University community will normally result in either probation, suspension from, or severance of, the relationship with the University. Sale or distribution there of will normally result in severance of the relationship with the University. This policy applies within or upon the grounds, buildings or any other facilities of the University or at University sponsored activities off-campus. Penalties for possession off-campus at a non-University sponsored activity will be considered, if the amount of possession is considered sufficient for intent to sell.
- All California Penal Statutory Laws will be enforced and must be complied with. Counseling and Psychological Services Center and Counseling and Psychological Services’ Prevention Education Programs / C.E.A.S.E. are available to assist employees who wish to seek professional help in finding appropriate referrals. Employees of the University are encouraged to refer students to these services for assistance with substance abuse issues.
Student Organization Sponsored On-Campus Events
Alcohol service is not permitted at student organization sponsored events on the SF State campus or any related properties.
Student Organization Sponsored Off-Campus Events
Student organizations should not serve alcohol at events off campus.
Violations may result in student organization privileges being revoked, including recognition. Any alleged violation will be reviewed and based on initial investigation, forwarded to the Student Organization Hearing Panel for review and possible sanctioning. Written documentation will be placed in the student organization’s file and notification will be forwarded to Judicial Affairs.
Campus Time, Place & Manner Policy–Executive Directive #89-13
All use of university properties and services by registered student organizations must comply with applicable campus time, place and manner regulations outlined in University Executive Order 89-13 (visit here to access University Executive Order 89-13).
Any and all bank accounts for recognized student organizations must bank through the Associated Students Incorportated (ASI) process as required by CSU administrative policy 1401.00. Any organization accounts at other financial institutions must be closed and the funds deposited in a new account through ASI no later than September 12, 2017. Student organizations that continue to have accounts at other financial institutions after September 12, 2016, are subject to disciplinary action (http://conduct.sfsu.edu/). This policy is separate and different from ASI funding and will not affect any funding procedures already in place with Associated Students, Inc. In addition to requiring that all student organizations bank with ASI, the safeguards below have been established in collaboration with the ASI banking process:
- Only the OrgSync registered President and Financial Officer/Treasurer for any student organization will have access to the account. These are the only two people that will be able to have access to the account.
- The Student Organization Account Authorization Update Form is available in the Files module in every OrgSync portal for organizations.
- The Student Organization Account Authorization Update Form must be completed annually at minimum (September 30th is the deadline) and if the president or treasurer change throughout the academic year.
- There is a maximum cash withdraw of $40 per day per account on all student organization accounts.
Use of University Name & Logo
The name of the University, abbreviation or logo may not be used as part of a student organization’s name, logo and/or to promote student organization-sponsored events and/or programs. In addition, student organizations are not eligible to use the University logo under any circumstances. Student organizations may indicate that their respective organization resides at San Francisco State University (i.e., Culinary Club at SF State). The name should reflect the type of student organization and clearly differentiate the club as a student organization and not a University department or program. The choice of language within the name should remain reflective of the University’s mission.
Student organizations may not use the name of the University off campus.
Organization Misconduct & Collective Responsibility
Student organization members are expected to follow the Student Conduct Code and all University policies and procedures for student organizations. In situations of collective responsibility, where organization members break policy and/or law, the organization may be held accountable for members’ actions.
It is expected that each organization will establish and enforce policies to achieve responsible group governance. While members may be held accountable for their actions individually, corrective actions may also be imposed upon an entire organization for individual members’ actions when the behavior is inconsistent with SF State policies. Student organizations may be held accountable if a substantial number of organization members (3 or more) or officers (2 or more) participate in or are aware, in advance, of the intended misconduct and fail to take appropriate steps to prevent it from taking place. Each case will be reviewed by SAE and may be forwarded for Student Organization Conduct. Problems with individual members may also be referred to the Office of Student Conduct (SSB 403) for review.