Get PJ Media on your Apple

Dr. Helen

Fire has put out the following press release:

WASHINGTON, November 21, 2013—The federal government is backing away from the nationwide “blueprint” for campus speech restrictions issued this May by the Departments of Education and Justice. The agencies’ settlement with the University of Montana sought to impose new, unconstitutional speech restrictions, due process abuses, and an overbroad definition of sexual harassment and proclaimed the agreement to be “a blueprint for colleges and universities throughout the country.”

But in a letter sent last week to the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE), the new head of the Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR), Catherine Lhamon, said that “the agreement in the Montana case represents the resolution of that particular case and not OCR or DOJ policy.”

“Assistant Secretary Lhamon’s clear statement that the Montana agreement does not represent OCR or DOJ policy—meaning it’s not much of a ‘blueprint’—should come as a great relief to those who care about free speech and due process on our nation’s campuses,” said FIRE President Greg Lukianoff. “Colleges have been bewildered trying to reconcile their obligations under the First Amendment with the requirements of the ‘blueprint’—essentially an impossible task. OCR and DOJ now need to directly inform our nation’s colleges and universities that they need no longer face that dilemma….”

“After a national outcry from concerned citizens and civil liberties groups this summer, OCR appears to be rethinking its ill-conceived attempt to deem vast swaths of student and faculty speech ‘sexual harassment.’ This is a welcome development,” said FIRE Director of Legal and Public Advocacy Will Creeley. “A great deal of work remains to be done, but advocates of free speech and academic freedom on campus should be cheered by this progress.”

Comments are closed.

All Comments   (2)
All Comments   (2)
Sort: Newest Oldest Top Rated
Yes, good news. Hopefully this unfortunate situation will resolve completely.
46 weeks ago
46 weeks ago Link To Comment
This is welcome news, indeed. I actually feel much better knowing that FIRE exists and is doing the wonderful work that they do. Mr. Lukianoff's book was wonderful.
47 weeks ago
47 weeks ago Link To Comment
View All