University of Hawaii Reverses Course on ‘Free-Speech’ Zone

May 30, 2014

By Bob Kellogg at OneNewsNow

Facing a lawsuit, a university in Hawaii has done an about-face and is doing away with its unconstitutional, restrictive speech zone.

In addition to confining students to a tiny “free-speech” zone, University of Hawaii at Hilo officials prevented a student from handing out copies of the U.S. Constitution, prompting the lawsuit.

Reading from a university statement, Foundation for Individual Rights in Education spokesman Robert Shibley says the university will now “permit students to approach others on campus,” and allow them to distribute literature in areas used by students and others.

“So that’s a really big step forward for the University of Hawaii,” he tells OneNewsNow.

OneNewsNow recently reported that two university students sued in April, alleging they were prevented by the Campus Student Center director from leaving their tables to hand out copies of the U.S. Constitution during an outside event where student groups had set up tables to distribute literature.

Shibley says he is anticipating a favorable, permanent outcome concerning the revision of the university’s speech policies.

Why? Because F.I.R.E. believes it’s “in the right on the law,” Shibley says, “and in this case it seems to be moving in that direction.”

Rather than just calling out universities, F.I.R.E. fires off letters to hundreds of schools offering to work with them to fix their problematic policies.

Schools: University of Hawaii at Hilo Cases: University of Hawaii at Hilo – Speech Code Litigation