Location: Oxford, Ohio
Federal Circuit: 6th Circuit
Miami University of Ohio has been given the speech code rating Yellow. Yellow light colleges and universities are those institutions with at least one ambiguous policy that too easily encourages administrative abuse and arbitrary application. Read more here.
Intentional or reckless acts that cause or reasonably could cause physical or mental harm to any person are prohibited. Actions that threaten or reasonably could cause a person to believe that the offender may cause physical or mental harm are also prohibited. Some examples of prohibited behavior include murder, assault, battery, stalking, telephone harassment, computer harassment, threats, intimidation, physical assault or abuse, verbal abuse, and any other conduct that threatens the health or safety of any person.
Harassment: conduct that is based on a person’s sex (including sexual harassment, sexual violence, sexual misconduct, domestic violence, dating violence, or stalking), race, color, religion, national origin, disability, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, pregnancy, military status, or veteran status that has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with a person’s employment or educational experience or creates an intimidating, hostile, offensive working, educational or living environment.
Examples of conduct prohibited by this policy include but are no means limited to: … Subjecting a person to offensive and unwelcome conduct based on the person’s sex, race, color, religion, national origin, disability, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, pregnancy, military status, or veteran status. Offensive and unwanted conduct includes offensive jokes, offensive pictures and digital images, slurs, epithets, threats, intimidation, stalking, and sexual violence, including rape, sexual assault, sexual battery and sexual coercion. The more severe the conduct the less need there is to show a repetitive series of incidents to demonstrate a hostile environment. In fact, a single severe incident may be sufficient to create a hostile environment.
Demonstrations may not impede ingress or egress to the University, any University property, parking lot, building, facility, or event. Thus, demonstrators must stay at least twenty-five (25) feet from the entrance to any University building, property, parking lot, facility or event, including entrances to construction sites.
The Code of Student Conduct at Miami University is intended to foster and protect the central purpose of the University: the free and open exchange of ideas.
The University believes that the right of expression is as necessary as the right of inquiry and that both must be preserved as essential to the pursuit and dissemination of knowledge and truth. Consequently, students, individually and collectively, may express their views through the normal faculty, administrative, and student channels of communication. Students also may express their views by demonstrating peacefully for concepts they wish to make known, and the University will make every reasonable effort to protect that right.
October 30, 2012
This fall, FIRE is writing a blog series about how schools can reform their problematic speech codes and earn a “green light” rating from FIRE—a distinction currently awarded to just 16 of the more than 400 schools in our Spotlight database, but one we hope to be able to award to many more in the years to come. In this series, we are discussing common problems with campus speech codes, focusing on examples from schools that are just a few small changes away from earning a green light rating. So far, we have examined how universities restrict speech by mandating “civility,” […]» Read More
November 7, 2007
At Miami University of Ohio, three student artists are under investigation, apparently with the possibility of punishment, for their pre-approved class project, which included “noose-like ropes” in a piece of art displayed on campus. Some viewers apparently interpreted the art in a way that made them feel offended, reminding them of actual nooses and lynchings. President David Hodge said in a letter to the campus that “I strongly condemn this display and deplore that in this campus community any person would believe this display is in any way acceptable.” Nick Gillespie at Reason.com reflects on the case: I find […]» Read More