Halloween Costume Policing at Northern Arizona University

Hayden Barnes, Esq. filed this request with the Northern Arizona University of Flagstaff, AZ .
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Completed

Communications

From: Hayden Barnes, Esq.


To Whom It May Concern:

Pursuant to the Arizona Public Records Law, I hereby request the following records:

Any records related to Halloween costumes worn by Northern Arizona University students on October 31, 2019, potentially held by but not limited to the Dean of Students, Office of Inclusion, Office of the University President, and Office of Public Affairs.

The requested documents will be made available to the general public, and this request is not being made for commercial purposes.

In the event that there are fees, I would be grateful if you would inform me of the total charges in advance of fulfilling my request. I would prefer the request filled electronically, by e-mail attachment if available or CD-ROM if not.

Thank you in advance for your anticipated cooperation in this matter. I look forward to receiving your response to this request within 10 business days.

Sincerely,

Hayden Barnes, Esq.

From: Northern Arizona University

Mr. Barnes,

NAU has no records responsive to your request. We did issue a statement, which is already public and which you may have already seen, in response to Halloween costumes:

“Northern Arizona University values diversity and inclusion. A recent Halloween post by NAU students has been taken seriously. The Dean of Students and Vice President of Student Engagement and Inclusive Excellence met with the students yesterday. The students recognized the seriousness of their actions and apologized. NAU values and supports free speech. However, speech that is demeaning to others does not represent our values.”

Sincerely,

NAU Communications

From: Hayden Barnes, Esq.

To Whom It May Concern:

Pursuant to the Arizona Public Records Law, I hereby request the following records:

Please provide any e-mail, memorandums, text messages, or voicemails between staff, administrators, and/or outside crisis management firms regarding the issuance of the statement you reference in your November 1, 2019 response. I would like to know how the statement was issued and in coordination with whom. I doubt the statement magically appeared with no internal consultation.

Please provide the schedules of the staff in the offices of the Dean of Students and Vice President of Student Engagement for October 30-October 31, 2019. I would like to know which staff and how those staff had time to have meeting about Halloween costumes. How did the staff at those offices even know to be in the office to meet with these students?

Please provide any written documentation generated as a result of the meeting with the Dean of Students and Vice President of Student Engagement or confirm there is no record of any of these meetings. If there is no record of these meetings, no e-mails, phone call logs, or other evidence, how did the person who issued the statement even know about them?

The requested documents will be made available to the general public, and this request is not being made for commercial purposes.

In the event that there are fees, I would be grateful if you would inform me of the total charges in advance of fulfilling my request. I would prefer the request filled electronically, by e-mail attachment if available or CD-ROM if not.

Thank you in advance for your anticipated cooperation in this matter. I look forward to receiving your response to this request within 10 business days.

Sincerely,

Hayden Barnes, Esq.

From: Northern Arizona University

Answers to your follow up questions are provided below.

From: Hayden Barnes, Esq.

Thank you for your response, however it only appears to be partial.

In addition to " any e-mail, memorandums, text messages, or voicemails between staff, administrators, and/or outside crisis management firms regarding the issuance of the statement you reference in your November 1, 2019 response"

I also requested the following:

"Please provide the schedules of the staff in the offices of the Dean of Students and Vice President of Student Engagement for October 30-October 31, 2019. I would like to know which staff and how those staff had time to have meeting about Halloween costumes. How did the staff at those offices even know to be in the office to meet with these students?

Please provide any written documentation generated as a result of the meeting with the Dean of Students and Vice President of Student Engagement or confirm there is no record of any of these meetings. If there is no record of these meetings, no e-mails, phone call logs, or other evidence, how did the person who issued the statement even know about them?"

Please provide those or indicate they do not exist.

The requested documents will be made available to the general public, and this request is not being made for commercial purposes.

In the event that there are fees, I would be grateful if you would inform me of the total charges in advance of fulfilling my request. I would prefer the request filled electronically, by e-mail attachment if available or CD-ROM if not.

Thank you in advance for your anticipated cooperation in this matter. I look forward to receiving your response to this request within 10 business days.

Sincerely,

Hayden Barnes, Esq.

From: Northern Arizona University

MuckRock,

We are working to obtain copies of the schedules of the staff in the offices of the Dean of Students and Vice President of Student Engagement for October 30-October 31, 2019, per your request.

There are no additional documents responsive to your request (beyond what I sent in my previous response). I also provided direct answers to your additional questions in my last response but will respond again:
I would like to know which staff and how those staff had time to have meeting about Halloween costumes. How did the staff at those offices even know to be in the office to meet with these students?
We are a relatively small campus community and are able to accomplish work like this via phone or in-person. On October 30th, the students in the photo came to the NAU Communications Office, explained what was happening and asked what they should do. We called the Interim Vice President for Student Affairs (IVPSA) and asked for direction. She suggested we direct the students to the Dean of Students and the Assistant Vice President of Student Engagement and Inclusive Excellence, which we did. The IVPSA called the Dean of Students and let him know that the students would likely be coming over – which they did. The Dean of Students asked the Assistant Vice President of Student Engagement and Inclusive Excellence to be involved (verbally) in the meeting with the students.

Please provide any written documentation generated as a result of the meeting with the Dean of Students and Vice President of Student Engagement or confirm there is no record of any of these meetings. If there is no record of these meetings, no e-mails, phone call logs, or other evidence, how did the person who issued the statement even know about them?
Student information is protected by FERPA. The previous explanation (above) explains how the staff that wrote the statement knew about it.

We will send the schedules soonest.

Thank you.

From: Northern Arizona University

Attached are the requested calendar pages. Student names and private HR information has been redacted.

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