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Solicitations, Sales, Signs, and Literature Distribution Procedure - 63.10.07

College Policy Number/Title:

Howard Community College (HCC) does not have an open forum for solicitations, sales, signs, and literature distribution.

Solicitations and sales by external groups in any of HCC's facilities are strictly prohibited unless official permission is authorized by the president's team. Solicitation includes activities such as distributing literature, posting signs, engaging in, or attempting to engage in conversation, or otherwise approaching an individual or individuals on college grounds with the purpose of petitioning, making a request regarding, endorsing, or making a plea for a product, cause, etc. Vendors that have received permission to do business with appropriate college staff by the procurement office are exempted.

Literature Distribution and Solicitation During Approved External Group Activities

Solicitations will be permitted on college grounds only under certain conditions and subject to time, place, and manner; restrictions are noted below. After making a written request to the office of auxiliary services and receiving approval, individuals may be permitted to distribute literature to those who desire such information. Groups or individuals may assemble at an outdoor spot designated by the office of auxiliary services to make their information available to students, college employees, and visitors. The assigned location should provide for the free flow of traffic and persons.

Groups or individuals may display their information and respond to inquiries and comments by interested individuals, but may not actively approach or solicit HCC employees, students, or campus visitors. Distribution of printed materials or the initiation of specific conversation by means of accosting individuals is prohibited. Furthermore, the dissemination of information is permitted only during the time period designated by the office of auxiliary services.

The college reserves the right to revoke this permission if the requesting group or individual does not comply with these provisions. Groups using college facilities that cause damage to college property are held responsible for any damages incurred.

Solicitations within campus facilities by businesses as a means to recruit students for employment are allowed provided that the recruitment activity is approved through the office of auxiliary services.

Solicitation Restrictions

Solicitation using the following materials is specifically not authorized by the college and may subject the sponsor to criminal prosecution or civil liability:

  • any advertising material designed to promote the sale of commercial products or services;
  • any advertisement of, or information concerning, any lottery, gift enterprise, or similar scheme offering prizes dependent in whole or in part on chance;
  • any unauthorized copyrighted material;
  • any obscene or indecent material;
  • any material that defames any race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, age, disability, or religious group, or any individual member of such group;
  • any advocating of violence, or words that are designed to incite violence;
  • any slanderous or libelous materials;
  • any deliberate misinformation that may result in harm to any individuals or group;
  • any noncompliance with applicable federal, state, and local laws and regulations; and
  • any advertising materials left on cars, in buildings, or anywhere on campus. This restriction includes, but is not limited to, business, political affiliation, or religious group advertisements.

The college reserves the right to restrict solicitation materials that violate other college policies or procedures.

Textbooks, Materials, and Endorsements

Members of academic departments should regularly review the selection of textbooks and other publications to verify their relevance and to remove faculty from the awkward position of recommending their own publications for student purchase. While the college vigorously supports the development of educational materials by its faculty, the college must also support a fair and open process for the purchase of textbooks and other materials.

Endorsement of products by college employees should not be made in the name of the college unless the college has signed an agreement with a vendor, which is approved by a vice president, the president, or the board of trustees, depending on the value of the contract.

Bulletin Boards and Signs in College Public Spaces

All signs, posters, fliers, and notices of any kind must be located on bulletin boards and those items may not be taped, glued, stapled, or mounted in any way, to walls, windows, columns, glass, or doors either within campus facilities or on college grounds, except in the case of a last-minute room change or cancellation or with permission from the president or respective area vice president. Cost centers of college offices or departments that cause damage to college property are held responsible for any damages.

All bulletin board notices must be approved and stamped by the office of student life at least one week prior to the event, with the exception of notices for bulletin boards that are specific to, and managed by, a college department. Unapproved and non-college-related postings will be removed.

Effective Date: 02/11/22

President's Office Use: VPAF/VPTL/VPSS/ EDPRM

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