University of Michigan Clarifies Speech Codes On Same Day DOJ Declares Opposition

June 15, 2018: UM Asks Judge To Dismiss Suit Calling It “False Caricature”

UM argues that the lawsuit against them is moot because they tightened their speech codes and because their policies have been mischaracterized.

June 11, 2018: Feds File “Statement Of Interest” In Case Arguing UM’s Speech Codes Are Unconstitutional 

The Department of Justice filed a “Statement of Interest” in a case between D.C.-based civil rights liberties group Speech First and University of Michigan’s President Mark Schlissel over the school’s speech code and anti-bullying policy.

On the same day, UM announced that it revised its policy.

Speech First alleges that the university’s policy is too broad and violates the First Amendment because it may cause students to censor their speech. The DOJ’s Statement of Interest argues that UM’s code of conduct is unconstitutional and “chills” protected speech.

“In recent years, many institutions of higher education have failed to uphold these freedoms, and free speech has come under attack on campuses across the country,” the Statement of Interest read. “Such failure is of grave concern because freedom of expression is ‘vital’ on campuses.”

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