Location: Washington, District Of Columbia
Federal Circuit: 1st Circuit
Howard University 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
Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies, StatementEngaging in verbal, electronic, visual, written or physical behavior directed at an individual or group that, in the view of a person of reasonable sensibilities, is likely to provoke or otherwise result in, a negative or injurious response, mental or emotional distress, or related reaction or consequence.
Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies, StatementDiscrimination:
A. Engaging in verbal or physical behavior directed at an individual or group based on national origin, race, creed, gender, religious beliefs, or sexual orientation that, according to a person of reasonable sensibilities, is likely to create an intimidating or demeaning environment that impedes the access of other students, faculty and staff to the educational benefits available to them as a member of the University community. The Code includes bias-related or hate crimes as defined in the DC Code.
B. Wearing articles of clothing with derogatory, racist, discriminatory, patently offensive, profane, sexually explicit, or graphic messages either in words or pictures, which demonstrate bias or discrimination against any individual or group within the University community.
Speech Code Category: Posting Policies, StatementBefore displaying any advertisement, including signs, posters or placards on the bulletin boards or other display spaces at Howard University, the University employee, organization, department or recognized student organization must obtain authorization from the scheduling office. The name(s) of the sponsoring organization(s)/entity must appear on all advertisements. Requests for permission to distribute handbills, flyers or publications must be made directly to the Scheduling Office for authorization for posting and/or distribution of the materials.
Speech Code Category: Internet Usage Policies, StatementUse of electronic communication facilities (such as e-mail, instant messaging, talk, chat rooms, threaded discussions or systems with similar functions) to send fraudulent, harassing, obscene, threatening, or other messages that are a violation of applicable federal, state or other law or University policy is prohibited.
Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies, StatementWith respect to academic programs and activities, "sexual harassment" shall mean unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other electronic, verbal, visual, written or physical conduct of a sexual nature, when:
A. submission to such conduct is made either explicitly or implicitly a basis for any decision affecting the terms or conditions of participation in any such pro-gram or activity or status in an academic course; or
B. such conduct has the purpose or affect of unreasonably interfering with a student’s educational right, privilege, advantage, or opportunity; or
C. such conduct is so pervasive or severe that it creates an intimidating, stressful, hostile, or offensive environment for learning and has no reasonable relationship to the subject matter of the relevant course of instruction.
Speech Code Category: Advertised Commitments to Free Expression, StatementAs members of the University Community, all students are guaranteed freedom of expression, inquiry and assembly, the right to form a student government, organize groups, to join associations in support of any cause or common interest, and to peacefully protest, provided that, such activity is conducted in a legal manner, is in accord with University regulations, and does not abridge the rights of others.
January 2, 2013
One New Year’s resolution we’d like to see in 2013 is a renewed effort to uphold the First Amendment on college campuses. According to a new report by the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, or FIRE, 62 percent of the nation’s colleges and universities “maintain severely restrictive speech codes … that clearly and substantially prohibit protected speech.” FIRE noted that the overwhelming majority of speech is protected. But narrow exceptions (such as “fighting words,” obscenity and defamation) “are often misused and abused by universities to punish constitutionally protected speech.” Restrictions intended to protect students from harassment or bullying have been […]» Read More