Political Activity

The University of Florida is open and on a regular schedule on Friday, Jan. 20, Inauguration Day. There is an expectation for faculty and staff to fulfill their job duties that day. Employees may use their lunch hour or vacation time to participate in off-campus inauguration activities.

UF does not regulate the individual political conduct of its employees as long as it does not interfere with the orderly operation of the university.

Institutions like the University of Florida may not participate in any political campaign or provide anything of value to support or oppose a candidate for public office. University facilities (unless rented through Business Affairs), e-mail, logos, and other resources may not be used for campaigning.

Of course, University employees have the important right to freely participate in political campaigns in their personal capacity at times that do not interfere with their work responsibilities. Also, the University and its employees may conduct educational and academic research activities about candidates and issues.

University employees may not participate in elective campaigns during their work time, use their offices to influence or interfere with an election, or solicit funds from other state employees to support or oppose a candidate in a coercive manner. In University buildings, funds may not be solicited from anyone to support or oppose a candidate (unless the space is rented from Business Affairs).

Certain areas of the campus, such as the Plaza of the Americas, are open for public speech, including political speech. Speech activities in these areas are encouraged, and may be conducted within UF’s reasonable regulations that ensure activities do not interfere with University work and do not create unsafe conditions or violations of law.

When necessary to avoid confusion, employees should make clear they are expressing personal opinions–and not speaking in their official roles or on behalf of the University–when taking a position for or against a candidate.