July 2, 2014 Print

On July 1, The Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE), an Atlas Network Partner, announced that they would sue universities that are enforcing illegal speech codes, rules that limit students’ freedom of speech. According to Reason Magazine, “with help from the law firm of Davis Wright Tremaine, FIRE is suing several universities that manifestly and unconstitutionally deprive their students of First Amendment rights.” So far, suits have been filed by FIRE against Ohio University, Iowa State University, Chicago State University, and Citrus College in California, but FIRE has stated its commitment to go after any and all universities that do not rid their student codes of unconstitutional speech codes. In the Reason Magazine article, Greg Lukianoff, president of FIRE, said, "universities' stubborn refusal to relinquish their speech codes must not be tolerated.” This unprecedented initiative will work to show the public that speech, even when unpopular, is a fundamental right that exists even within universities. A free society depends on the ability of rational individuals to engage in free dialogue with their peers. Noting that universities are a place for learning and growth, the Atlas Network is proud of the work of FIRE in fighting for the freedom of students around the United States. To read more about FIRE’s freedom of speech initiative, click here.