Political activities

General Counsel reminds faculty, staff about political activities guidelines

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12:11 p.m., Aug. 28, 2012--With the election season at hand, the University of Delaware Office of General Counsel reminds faculty and staff that there are limitations imposed on electioneering activities by the University’s tax-exempt status.

The general rule is that employees are free -- indeed, have a constitutionally protected right -- to participate in partisan campaign activities on their own time, but cannot and should not use University resources to express support for or opposition to any political candidate, according to Lawrence White, vice president and general counsel.

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White added a special word on the topic of campaign buttons, noting that every election year issues seem to arise surrounding that topic. He said employees are entitled to wear campaign buttons to work but are not entitled to pass out campaign buttons to fellow employees, at least during regular University hours on University premises.

To assist in clarifying issues related to partisan political activities on campus, the Office of General Counsel has developed a website which contains guidelines.

UD employees who have any questions about electioneering in general are encouraged to contact the Office of General Counsel, telephone 831-7366.

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