Location: North Dartmouth, Massachusetts
Federal Circuit: 1st Circuit
University of Massachusetts at Dartmouth 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
Posting, sending or publicly displaying or printing unsolicited mail or materials that violate existing laws or University policies/codes of conduct. Such material includes, but is not limited to those that are of a fraudulent, obscene, offensive, defamatory, harassing, abusive, or threatening nature. Additionally, the University has special concern for incidents in which individuals are subject to harassment or threat because of membership in a particular racial, religious, gender or sexual orientation group.
Any use which in the University’s determination is contrary to its mission, goals, and values, or which is detrimental to the University’s good name and reputation, and/or which adversely impacts the University and/or the University community
Public forum spaces are locations that by tradition or policy are available for public assembly and speech. The University of Massachusetts Dartmouth recognizes the following public forum spaces: The grassy areas to the south and east, within 75 feet, of the campanile, bounded by the Group I campanile walkway and the Group IV campanile walkway.
Person wishing to use a public forum space must inform the Department of Public Safety (DPS) at least 48 hours in advance regarding the date, time, number of people involved, and the contact person(s) for the event.
The Office of Housing and Residential Life reserves the right to control the content of publicity devices (alcohol, tobacco, and community standards) as well as language on the advertisements. The original flyer or banner must be stamped no less than 24 hours before posting.
Campus Electronic Mail Policies will ensure that University email users will NOT: a. send any unsolicited mail or materials that are of a fraudulent, defamatory, harassing, or threatening nature. b. post materials that violate existing laws or University codes of conduct, are inconsistent with the University mission, or are commercial advertisements or announcements on any electronic bulletin boards.
Disorderly conduct: … Individual or group activities that intentionally or recklessly cause serious disturbance or distress to others.
All Residents are expected to be responsible members of both the residential and campus community; be respectful of others rights and privacy and the diversity others bring to the richness of the campus; act and speak with civility; honor and follow the rules and policies of UMass Dartmouth community; assist in the safety and security of the residential community and contribute to the overall positive living and neighborhood community environment that will provide a positive living/learning experience for all campus residents.
Harassment includes but is not limited to, actions that prevent the person from conducting his or her customary or usual affairs. Also included is conduct less than a physical attack or physical interference that is directed at a person and that unreasonably interferes with that person in the conduct of his or her customary or usual affairs, such as the posting of threatening letters directed to the person; the use of threatening language directed at another; intimidation (incl. witnesses documented in an incident or from a hearing); threatening telephone calls, e-mails, instant messages and text messages; or the vandalism of a person’s room or property.
The University recognizes the need for all members of the University community, administrators, faculty, staff, and students to reaffirm formally their profound commitment to freedom of speech and to clarify the implications of that commitment. In this context, freedom of speech encompasses all forms of communication as well as the freedom to listen, watch, protest, or otherwise participate in such communication. We believe it is our responsibility to espouse an atmosphere of free speech and free inquiry and to advocate for the timely discussion of a wide variety of issues. We believe, further, that vital intellectual discourse is essential to democracy and to ensuring a just society. Believing speech to be false, deleterious, or in any other way odious cannot be cause for its suppression except for speech as specified under allowable exemptions below. Preventing speech from occurring by disruptive protest also constitutes an attack on freedom of speech.
Sexual harassment is a form of general harassment and is defined as follows: unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and/or other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature if the conduct is sufficiently severe, persistent, or pervasive to limit a student’s ability to participate in or benefit from the education program, or to create a hostile or abusive educational environment.
October 17, 2012
by Matt Camara South Coast Today DARTMOUTH — UMass Dartmouth students had better keep quiet. A university policy restricting public assemblies to an official “public forum space” creates a “chilling effect” on student willingness to protest or engage in political demonstrations, students and faculty told The Standard-Times. “It says in this spot and this spot only can you protest,” said philosophy professor Phil Cox, who describes the policy as unconstitutional. “It’s a very unfortunate compromise of students’ rights.” The public forum area, commonly called the “free speech zone” by students and faculty, encompasses a patch of grass 75 feet […]» Read More
October 18, 2012
Students at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth are speaking out against the university’s limitations on where students may protest or engage in public political speech. As The Standard-Times (New Bedford, Mass.) reports, UMass Dartmouth’s “free speech zone” “encompasses a patch of grass 75 feet southeast of the campanile at the center of campus and bordered on each side by walkways.” According to the article, the policy has not been enforced since its creation in 2005, despite at least one protest occurring outside the zone. Nevertheless, as philosophy professor Phil Cox notes, UMass’s rules and regulations regarding “public forum spaces” interfere […]» Read More