Policies & Processes

Equity, inclusion, and social justice guide NASPA's policies, processes, and bylaws. Use this site to find information about hosting a program or event, as well as expectations for how we interact with one another.

Hosting Programs and Events

  • Event and Program Locations

    As an expression of NASPA’s Guiding Principle of Inclusion, NASPA makes every effort to select conference locations and venues that provide a positive professional development experience free from discrimination and injustice. NASPA is committed to engaging with cities that promote non-discrimination and support of all individuals inclusive of their race, color, religion, national origin, sexual orientation, gender identity/expression, veteran status, age, and/or disability. 


    In Association negotiations with cities, as well as counties, convention centers, hotels, and/or institutions, NASPA staff, regional advisory boards, and other conference planning committees will exercise due diligence to ensure that relevant information related to non-discrimination policies and pending legislations is considered in making a contracting decision.


    The scale and scope of planning for conferences, workshops, and other events necessitates that the Association execute contracts with convention centers, hotels, and event venues years in advance. If, following a fully-executed contract, the city or county changes its non-discrimination policies, the NASPA Board of Directors will review the cancellation clauses and financial implications for the Association. The Association will be an advocate for non-discrimination at the contracted location and leverage its members to educate for change. However, if the contractual financial liability is of material significance to the Association, the NASPA Board of Directors will honor all contractual obligations, at its discretion. 


    NASPA staff, regional advisory boards, and other conference planning committees responsible for negotiating and administering meeting facility contracts shall not knowingly enter into contract negotiations with convention centers, hotels, or institutions which are in active labor disputes.


    NASPA staff, regional advisory boards, and other conference planning committees remain committed to the avoidance of scheduling events during major religious holidays and observances. 


    Adapted from “NASPA Non-Discrimination & Labor Policy for Future Hotel and Convention Center Contracts,” Approved by NASPA Board of Directors in March 2007 and revised by NASPA Board of Directors in March 2016

  • Indigenous Peoples Protocol Practice Policy (IPPPP)

    In March 2016 the NASPA Board of Directors approved the Indigenous Protocol Practice Policy (IPPP), a policy proposed and advocated by the Indigenous Peoples Knowledge Community (IPKC). In collaboration with the IPKC, NASPA commits to the respectful inclusion and representation of Indigenous peoples and practices in all NASPA events, programs, media, and materials. 


    The IPPP calls for consultation and coordination among the IPKC and NASPA, its regions, knowledge communities, and other constituent groups, in planning annual, regional, and other events. Indigenous protocols are dynamic and will incorporate change and address new issues over time. Cultural differences and expressions exist among all Indigenous people and learning this advances the concept of diversity. Implementation of this protocol asks humility, respect, and openness to ways of knowing and being that may be different from our own. The IPPP represents a starting point for implementation, which should be considered with members of the IPKC.


    Event organizers will exercise due diligence to understand the protocol of local Indigenous communities. For questions or concerns relating to any part of the Indigenous Protocol Practice, including land acknowledgments and the spelling and pronunciation of Indigenous words and names, the IPKC invites consultation. 

  • Accessibility Accommodations

    Hosting a NASPA program or event includes a responsibility to request and address requests for reasonable accommodations for all spaces and meetings. This includes but is not limited to:

    • wheelchair-accessible and all-gender bathrooms
    • elevators
    • transportation options
    • dietary considerations in meal planning
    • ASL interpretation 
    • an on-site contact to assist participants in navigating event spaces and sessions
  • Gender and Trans Inclusion

    NASPA rejects the gender binary social construct that recognizes only two sexes and that gender is inextricably linked to one of those two sexes. Hosting a NASPA program or event includes the expectation to:

    • provide opportunities for program participants to self-select and express their genders through the use of gender pronouns on name badges
    • make available visible and accessible all-gender restrooms
    • educate participants about all-gender restrooms by posting language approved by the NASPA Gender and Sexuality Knowledge Community, Women in Student Affairs Knowledge Community, and Men and Masculinities Knowledge Community

Non-Discrimination and Harassment Policy and Procedures

  • Engaging in Appropriate Conduct at NASPA Events

    NASPA participants are expected to conduct themselves in all NASPA capacities, events, and settings with:

    • Consideration and respect in their speech and actions and in the personal, professional, and business conduct;
    • Honesty in their professional relationships;
    • Respect for individuals' personal boundaries and conduct;
    • Behavior that is free from:
      • Demeaning, discirminatory, insulting, or harassing language or actions, in person or online;
      • Harassment of any kind, including but not limited to unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical harassment. 
  • Policy on Non-Discrimination and Harassment

    It is the policy of NASPA not to discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, age, gender identity, gender expression, affectional or sexual orientation, veteran status, or disability in any of its policies, programs, publications, and services. NASPA prohibits discrimination and harassment at any time, including during its events or in publications and online learning communities. 

  • Reporting Discrimination and Harassment

    If you experience or witness discrimination or harassment at a NASPA program/event or occurring while you or others have acted in a NASPA-related capacity, we encourage you to report the incident to a member of the NASPA staff. Reports can be made online, through the event mobile app (if applicable), paper form (which should be available from staff at the registration desk), or by email to Stephanie Gordon, Vice President for Professional Development, at sgordon@naspa.org. You can report anonymously or share your name and contact information for follow-up by NASPA staff.