A group of faculty in the California State University system is working to promote free speech and academic freedom throughout the CSU system, and it is starting the school year off right with two new initiatives.
The group, CSU Faculty for Academic Freedom, is offering CSU students, staff, and alumni the opportunity to sign a statement in support of a letter the group published in June 2022, which calls on faculty to support free speech and academic freedom.
The June 2022 letter caught FIRE’s eye, and we featured the group in an article posted in May, at which point the letter had garnered signatures from more than 240 faculty across the CSU system. Now, 280 faculty members have signed on.
With students, staff, and alumni now able to officially express their support, we’re optimistic that this vocal contingent of free speech supporters will have a positive influence on policy in the state — especially in light of recent events.
The College of Business Administration and Public Policy at California State University, Dominguez Hills proposed a policy earlier this year that would require faculty to include diversity, equity, and inclusion language and materials in their teaching and syllabi. According to the proposed policy, the DEI Committee at CSUDH’s College of Business Administration and Public Policy is set to vote on the policy this fall.
FIRE explained to CSU-Dominguez Hills on June 5 that if this policy is implemented, it would violate the faculty’s right to academic freedom and freedom of conscience. FIRE sent a follow-up letter on July 5, but we have still not received an answer from the school.
On Aug. 30, C-FAF sprung into action again, launching another open letter, which faculty at the school can sign, in support of FIRE’s recommendation to reject the policy.
If you are a faculty member at CSU-Dominguez Hills or a CSU student, staff member, or alum, we hope that you’ll consider signing one or both of these letters. In doing so, you’ll help FIRE and C-FAF do the essential work of safeguarding freedom of speech and academic freedom in the CSU system.
CSU students, staff, and alumni: Sign a statement of support for C-FAF's open letter for free speech and academic freedom.
CSUDH faculty: Sign C-FAF's open letter against the proposed DEI policy at CSUDH’s College of Business Administration and Public Policy.