Montclair State University: Pro-Palestinian Group Fined for ‘Political’ Expression

Category: Free Speech
Schools: Montclair State University

On September 25, 2014, Montclair State University (MSU) Student Government Association (SGA) Attorney General Demi Washington penalized the Montclair Students for Justice in Palestine (MSJP) organization five percent of its semester budget and ordered the group to cease all political activity after receiving complaints that the group had handed out “political” and “offensive” pamphlets. Washington also admonished the group that it was only to focus on Palestinian culture and not to take positions on political issues. On October 3, FIRE sent a letter to MSU demanding that the SGA rescind its sanctions against MSJP and respect its student groups’ ability to distribute literature of a political nature. On October 8, SGA President Kristen Bunk reversed the sanctions and reassured MSJP members that students and organizations have a right to express political views on campus.

  • Montclair State University Student Association Reverses Penalties On Pro-Palestinian Club’s Pamphleteering

    October 9, 2014

    By Hannah Adely at A pro-Palestinian student club at Montclair State University, fined two weeks ago and barred from giving out political literature, had that punishment repealed Thursday by the overseeing Student Government Association. The Montclair Students for Justice in Palestine had been sanctioned for giving political fliers to students at an information table two weeks ago and was told the club was not supposed to take political stances. That restriction, imposed by the SGA’s attorney general, who also is a student, was reversed based on legal advice. “It was very surprising because the action they took was very […]

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  • Victory: Bogus Sanctions Against Pro-Palestinian Group for ‘Political’ Speech Dropped at Montclair State

    October 13, 2014

    After facing sanctions from the Montclair State University (MSU) Student Government Association (SGA), members of the Montclair Students for Justice in Palestine (MSJP) chapter are once again able to practice their free speech rights on the New Jersey public institution’s campus. On September 22, MSJP members handed out pamphlets at the group’s registered table in the MSU’s student center. The pamphlets described the group’s values, planned activities, and views on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Upon receiving complaints about the overtly political and “offensive” nature of the pamphlets, SGA Attorney General Demi M. Washington sent a “Letter of Sanction” to MSJP, condescending […]

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