Sent: Tuesday, September 27, 2011 4:01 PM
To: All Faculty & Staff
Subject: Memo from Chancellor Sorensen, Provost Furst-Bowe and Vice Chancellor Nieskes
TO: UW-Stout Faculty and Staff via electronic mail
FROM: Charles W. Sorensen, Chancellor
Julie Furst-Bowe, Provost
Ed Nieskes, Vice Chancellor
DATE: September 27, 2011
RE: Poster Incident Involving a UW-Stout Professor
There have been recent news reports about an incident in which two posters hung by a UW-Stout professor outside his office were removed by campus police. There are some important points to consider in the wake of these incidents:
UW-Stout administrators believe strongly in the right of all students, faculty and staff to express themselves freely about issues on campus and off. This freedom is fundamental on a public university campus.
However, we also have the responsibility to promote a campus environment that is free from threats of any kind—both direct and implied. It was our belief, after consultation with UW System legal counsel, that the posters in question constituted an implied threat of violence. That is why they were removed.
This was not an act of censorship. This was an act of sensitivity to and care for our shared community, and was intended to maintain a campus climate in which everyone can feel welcome, safe and secure.