Policy 8.14 Respect for Open Expression Policy

Category: Protest and Demonstration Policies School: Emory University Statement Rating: Green Last updated: September 20, 2017

Relevant excerpt

[T]he foundations of this Policy are grounded in the principles of the entire campus being open and available to members to build community through Expression, Protest, and Dissent.  As such, all spaces, both indoors and outdoors, are available to support both planned and impromptu Expression, Protest, and Dissent except for the specific locations and situations listed below.  For planned events, reservations can be made and no reservation shall be denied because of the content of expression. For impromptu Expression, Protest, and Dissent, please see 8.14.5.7.

The following locations are not available for these types of Events, Meetings, or Protests unless a special exception is granted; however, if the focus of the Expression, Protest, or Dissent includes one of these areas, there is an affirmative support to ensure protests occur in places like the outdoor spaces in front of the buildings or common gathering places close to these locations.

a. Private offices, research laboratories or associated facilities, and computer centers.

b. Specific areas of offices, museums, libraries, and other facilities that contain valuable or sensitive materials, collections, equipment, and records protected by law, or by existing University policy such as educational records, student-related or personnel-related records, or financial records.

c. Classrooms, seminar rooms, auditoriums, meeting rooms, or outdoor spaces in which classes, private Events, or Meetings are being held or are scheduled to be held during the time of the Protest.

d. Outdoor and indoor locations when the free flow of traffic, both vehicular and pedestrian, will be unreasonably impeded; when entrances or exits to private offices, classrooms, and meeting spaces are blocked;   or when undue health and safety risk to members of the Community are created.

e. Hospitals, clinics, and surrounding green space or grounds (including, but not limited to, sidewalks, access roads, parking areas, etc.), healthcare service providers, emergency facilities, communication systems, utilities, or other facilities or services vital to the continued functioning of the University.

8.14.5.7                 Protests in Spaces that have not been reserved

We fully support and acknowledge as a Community that sometimes impromptu Expression, Dissent, and Protest are pivotal to achieve the principles of this Policy. Not having a reservation is not sufficient reason for terminating any Protest unless the impromptu Protest unreasonably interferes with prior scheduled Meetings, Events, or essential operations of the University. The Committee shall ensure impromptu Expression, Dissent, or Protest continues until it should otherwise be relocated to allow for prior scheduled activities. To encourage such impromptu Dissent, the Open Expression Observers shall demonstrate this affirmative commitment by working with those involved to identify space where the Expression, Protest, or Dissent can be continued should the space being used interfere with other scheduled Meetings, Events, or essential operations.

All general outdoor public areas of the institution, even those that have reservation procedures, should be available for impromptu Expression, Protest, and Dissent unless it otherwise violates this policy.  Requirements to reserve space should not be unreasonable in terms of time frame, requirements, or costs to the group wishing to host the Event. No group or organization should be denied use of a space on campus because of the content of the Meeting, Event, or Protest, unless such content would otherwise violate the responsibilities set forth in 8.14.5.5 of this Policy.

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