American University: President Announces Policies Suppressing Free Expression


American University

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Case Overview

On January 25, 2024, American University announced three new policies, effective immediately, intended to curb anti-Semitism on campus. These policies prohibit protests inside university buildings, require student organizations to have membership criteria that is “welcoming” to all students, and ban posted materials—including signs, flyers, and notices—that do not “promote inclusivity.” FIRE wrote AU on February 9, explaining that the policies violate AU’s promises to uphold freedom of expression because the prohibition on indoor protests fails to define the word protest and would apply to protected expression. We also explained that students have a right to determine the membership requirements for student organizations, and that banning posted materials the AU administration deems insufficiently “inclusive” is a form of impermissible content discrimination.