CSU teacher let go: code of conduct - WCBD-TV: News, Weather, and Sports for Charleston, SC

CSU teacher let go: code of conduct

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We have new information about a story that has been picked up around the world. Dr. Paul Roof is the former Charleston Southern University associate professor whose contract was not renewed last week after it was discovered that his imagine is being used on a beer can made by Holy City Brewing.

We wanted to learn more about why Dr. Roof did not have his contract renewed last Friday.

The school gave us a copy of their conflict of interest and employee conduct policy. That policy has a couple of areas that might be applicable to Dr. Roof. It says, "A potential conflict of interest occurs when an individual's personal or private interest might lead an independent observer reasonably to question whether the individual's professional actions or decisions are influenced by considerations of significant personal interest, financial or otherwise." It also specifically defines conflict of interest as anything having an adverse or potentially adverse effect on the university.

Stephan Futeral is an attorney who practices employment law at the Futeral and Nelson Law Firm. We showed him CSU's conduct policy to get his legal opinion. "I understand that he indicated that he didn't get paid for this and he didn't have control over this. But having said that, the way the policy is written, he didn't need to get paid. He didn't need to have control... Under these circumstances, it looks like they let him go simply because he gave an improper appearance of having endorsed a local brand of beer. And under their guidelines, it clearly states that if any reasonable person might believe that he is endorsing that, or is affiliated with that, then they have the right to let him go. Legally, he just simply doesn't have any recourse."

Futeral also says that with SC being an at will employment state, the employer can fire or not renew a contract for any reason.

Dr. Roof has told news 2 that he is consulting with an attorney of his own about what to do next.



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