California State University – Fresno

Location: Fresno, California
Website: http://www.csufresno.edu
Type: Public
Federal Circuit: 9th Circuit

Speech Code Rating

California State University – Fresno has been given the speech code rating Red. A red light university has at least one policy that both clearly and substantially restricts freedom of speech. Read more here.

Red Light Policies

Yellow Light Policies
  • Standards for Student Conduct 13-14

    Speech Code Category: Policies on Tolerance, Respect, and Civility

    Students are expected to be good citizens and to engage in responsible behaviors that reflect well upon their university, to be civil to one another and to others in the campus community, and contribute positively to student and university life.

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  • Policy on the Use of Buildings and Grounds 13-14

    Speech Code Category: Protest and Demonstration Policies

    Except in the case of private sales and commercial transactions to which Section 10.0 applies, the selling or displaying for sale of any books, newspapers, pamphlets and other published materials shall be permitted
    on campus provided: … Prior permission has been granted by the Student Activities Office.

    The eastern edge of the University Center, the eastern edge of the University Student Union South Patio, the northern edge of the Madden Library, and the eastern edge of the Peace Garden generally bound the Free Speech Area. It does not include outdoor parts of the University Student Union, such as patios or balconies, and does not include Food Services patio areas. The University has designated the Free Speech Area as the area to allow expressive activity unrelated to its educational mission on University grounds. The designation of this area is not meant to constrain freedom of speech on the remainder of campus, but merely to establish a forum for the convenient use of students and the general public.

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  • Residence Hall Policies: Harassment 13-14

    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies

    Behavior in the form of harassment is also not tolerated. Any such behavior may be grounds for dismissal. Harassment is the unwanted imposition of attention, usually in the form of repeated or unwanted verbal or physically abusive behavior (i.e. sexual, racial, religious, etc.), and is strictly prohibited.

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  • Standards for Student Conduct 13-14

    Speech Code Category: Internet Usage Policies

    Use of computing facilities and resources to send obscene or intimidating and abusive messages.

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  • Executive Order 1072: Implementation of Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 and Related Sexual Harassment/Violence Legislation for CSU Students 13-14

    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies

    “Sexual Harassment” is unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature that includes, but is not limited to: sexual violence; sexual advances; requests for sexual favors; indecent exposure; and other verbal, nonverbal or physical unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature, where such conduct is sufficiently severe, persistent or pervasive that its effect, whether or not intended, could be considered by a reasonable person in the shoes of the individual, and is in fact considered by the individual, as limiting the individual’s ability to participate in or benefit from the services, activities or opportunities offered by the university. Sexual harassment also includes gender-based harassment, which may include acts of verbal, non-verbal or physical aggression, intimidation or hostility based on sex or sex-stereotyping, even if those acts do not involve conduct of a sexual nature.

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  • Residence Hall Policies: Community Standards 13-14

    Speech Code Category: Policies on Tolerance, Respect, and Civility

    Bigotry has no place within our community, nor does the denigration of another human being on the basis of age, physical ability, national origin, sexual orientation, race, gender, religious or political affiliation. We will not tolerate threats, intimidation, violence, or other forms of harassment against any member of our community. Likewise, we will not accept ignorance, humor, anger, alcohol or substance abuse as an excuse, reason or rationale for such behavior. Such behavior will be subject to disciplinary action which may include, but is not limited to, immediate removal from the residence halls.

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  • Residence Hall Policies: Aggressive/Abusive Behavior 13-14

    Speech Code Category: Policies on Tolerance, Respect, and Civility

    Aggressive/Abusive behavior is not appropriate in University Courtyard. Residents who are confronted with conflict situations are expected to deal with such conflict in a constructive, non-aggressive manner which will lead to resolution of the differences. Violence in any form (physical or verbal) or the threat of violence is not an acceptable method of dealing with conflict, nor is dealing with conflict on social networking sites and will not be tolerated in the residence halls. Those who choose to engage in such behavior are subject to disciplinary action or dismissal from the halls,depending on the severity of the behavior

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Green Light Policies
  • Executive Order 1074: Systemwide Policy Prohibiting Discrimination, Harassment and Retaliation Against Students 13-14

    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies

    Harassment means unwelcome conduct engaged in because of a Protected Status that is sufficiently severe, persistent or pervasive that its effect, whether or not intended, could be considered by a reasonable person in the shoes of the Student, and is in fact considered by the Student, as limiting the Student’s ability to participate in or benefit from the services, activities or opportunities offered by the University.

    1. Sexual Harassment, as defined in California Education Code §212.5, consists of both non-sexual conduct based on sex or sex-stereotyping and conduct that is sexual in nature, and includes unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal, visual, or physical conduct of a sexual nature where:
      1. Submission to, or rejection of, the conduct by the Student is explicitly or implicitly used as the basis for any decision affecting the Student’s academic status or progress, or access to benefits and services, honors, programs, or activities available at or through the University; or
      2. The conduct is sufficiently severe, persistent or pervasive that its effect, whether or not intended, could be considered by a reasonable person in the shoes of the Student, and is in fact considered by the Student, as limiting the Student’s ability to participate in or benefit from the services, activities or opportunities offered by the University.

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  • Some colleges need to take free-speech classes, according to survey

    December 21, 2012

    The Watchdog Blog Many of America’s colleges appear to need to take a few courses in free speech. More than 60 percent of the 400-plus colleges and universities studied by the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education have policies that restrict students’ First Amendment rights. In a report released this week, FIRE also raised concern over federal and state regulations governing bullying and harassment that the report labeled sloppily written and implemented. To be fair, FIRE acknowledged that the number of schools with “red light” free-speech codes has declined for the fifth straight year. And more schools eliminated their restrictive speech policies in 2012, earning […]

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  • SPLC and FIRE File ‘Amici’ Brief Supporting CSU-Fresno Student Activist

    November 6, 2013

    On October 29, the Student Press Law Center (SPLC) and FIRE filed an amici curiae (“friends of the court”) brief (PDF) with the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit in the case of O’Brien v. Welty. The case concerns Neal O’Brien, a student at California State University-Fresno who was disciplined for asking two professors about their involvement in a campus magazine and for attempting to videotape the encounter. O’Brien was charged with harassment for his zealous inquiries in the professors’ offices, demonstrating yet again just how easily vague and overbroad harassment policies can be used to silence students’ speech. In May, a U.S. […]

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