Hazing Policy

Hazing Policy

Traditions provide reminders and context of Gonzaga University’s past and hopes for the future. Such rituals are to always be deeply rooted in mutual respect and dignity, and not through activities that harm or humiliate. Gonzaga University strictly prohibits hazing.

  1. Hazing Defined

    1. The Revised Code of the State of Washington (RCW, Section 288.10.900) defines hazing as any act committed as part of a person's recruitment, initiation, pledging, admission into, or affiliation with a student organization, athletic team, or living group, or any pastime or amusement engaged in with respect to such an organization, athletic team, or living group that causes, or is likely to cause, bodily danger or physical harm, or serious psychological or emotional harm, to any student or other person attending a public or private institution of higher education or other postsecondary educational institution in this state, including causing, directing, coercing, or forcing a person to consume any food, liquid, alcohol, drug, or other substance which subjects the person to risk of such harm, regardless of the person's willingness to participate. "Hazing" does not include customary athletic events or other similar contests or competitions.


  2. Hazing includes, but is not limited to, the following actions and situations, if they happen for the purpose defined in Section (A.a.) of this policy:

    1. Acts that cause, or are likely to cause, bodily danger or physical harm, such as beating, bondage, branding, calisthenics (e.g., wall-sits, sit-ups, push-ups, and/or other forms of forced physical activity), exposure to the elements, kicking, paddling, pushing, shoving, striking, tackling, throwing items at or on individuals, whipping, and/or forced, excessive, or coerced consumption of food, alcohol, cannabis, drugs, or any other substance.
    2. Acts that cause, or are likely to cause, psychological or emotional harm, such as exclusion from social contact, isolation, kidnapping or abandonment, line-ups or berating, sleep deprivation, and/or food deprivation.
    3. Activities that a reasonable person would view to be frightening, humiliating, intimidating, or deceptive (including deception intended to convince the individual of impending pain, injury, or non-initiation) such as: blindfolding; having individuals yell when entering or departing a physical structure or in the presence of designated individuals; having individuals use designated entrances or exits and/or not permitting them to enter general use facilities or spaces; intentionally creating labor or clean-up work; not allowing individuals to wear certain garments or accessories; promoting servitude; requiring individuals to complete personal errands; requiring individuals to wear apparel that is conspicuous, lewd, or uncomfortable; and/or requiring individuals to wear scant clothing or to be nude.
    4. Participation in any act of a sexual or lewd nature.
    5. Activities that endanger or have the potential to endanger the academic performance or personal life of an individual such as: not allowing adequate time for or interfering with academics, employment, or other personal obligations.
    6. Any destruction or removal of public or private property.
    7. Activities that violate federal, state, or local laws.
    8. Activities that violate University policies.

  3. Definitions (For the purposes of this policy, the following definitions exist):

    1. Athletic Team: A group of students who are associated with each other through an organized athletic team. Teams include intercollegiate teams and intramural teams and may be organized by the Athletic Department or Student Affairs.
    2. Employee: A person who is receiving wages from the University and is in a position with direct contact with students in a supervisory role or position of authority. “Employee” includes student employees. “Employee” does not include persons employed as medical staff with an affiliated organization, entity, or extension of Gonzaga University, unless the employee has a supervisory role or position of authority over students. “Employee” does not include confidential employees such as Lutheran Social Services Advocate, SAfeT, priests serving as a sacramental confessor, any ordained religious serving in a sacred confidence role.              
    3. Living Group: A group of students living in university owned, leased, or managed residential property or building in which an application or selection process for membership is required. Examples   include Logan House and Living Learning Communities (LLC).
    4. Organization: A group of students who are associated with each other and who have registered with the University as an organization through Student Affairs policies for recognized organizations. “Organizations” may also be groups who are recognized by an academic unit or University department.
    5. Volunteer: A person who provides or offers to provide services without payment for a university sponsored activity or program.
  4. Prohibited Conduct (The following behaviors constitute examples of violations of this policy):

    1. Purposefully, knowingly, recklessly, or negligently hazing any person.
    2. Involvement in the planning of and/or being present during the commissioning of hazing.
    3. Implying that a person will be shunned, removed, or unable to join, participate, or maintain affiliation or membership in any organization, athletic team, or living group for failing or refusing to partake in or submit to any form of hazing activity.
    4. Failure to intervene, prevent, or stop hazing if the individual has prior knowledge of a planned hazing activity.
    5. Knowingly making a false accusation of hazing.
    6. Failure to report information about suspected violations of this policy if required to do so as described in Section (F) of this policy.
    7. Failure to cooperate in an investigation or Student Conduct Resolution Process, as outlined in the Abuse of the Student Code of Conduct System section of the Student Code of Conduct.


  5. Jurisdiction

    1. This policy applies to behavior that occurs on or off-campus and includes University sponsored, or approved and non-University events, activities, and programs, as well as non-University events.

  6. Duty to Report

    1. If, as a result of observations or information received in the course of employment or volunteer service, any employee, including a student employee, or volunteer at a public or private institution of higher education has reasonable cause to believe that hazing has occurred, the employee or volunteer shall report the incident, or cause a report to be made, to the Resolution Center for Student Conduct and Conflict. The employee or volunteer shall make the report at the first opportunity to do so.
    2. A person who witnesses hazing or has reasonable cause to believe hazing has occurred or will occur and makes a report in good faith may not be sanctioned for the violation of hazing unless the person is engaged in the planning, directing, participating, or the act of hazing reported.
    3. Nothing in this section shall preclude a person from independently reporting hazing or suspected hazing activity to law enforcement.


    Last updated: 8/22/23