Armstrong State University

Location: Savannah, Georgia
Website: http://www.armstrong.edu
Type: Public
Federal Circuit: 11th Circuit

Speech Code Rating

Armstrong State University has been given the speech code rating Red. A red light university has at least one policy that both clearly and substantially restricts freedom of speech. Read more here.

At present, FIRE has not been involved in any cases at this school.

Red Light Policies

  • Policy on Freedom of Expression

    Speech Code Category: Protest and Demonstration Policies
    Last updated: July 28, 2016

    The following provisions and regulations apply to faculty, staff, students, student organizations and visitors and deal only with non-commercial speech. Commercial speech is regulated by campus solicitation policies.

    The two areas designated as “Free Expression Areas” at Armstrong are the two grass lawns bordered directly by the Sports Center Parking lot and the Student Union with sidewalks on three sides. All users must stay within the designated area and not obstruct, disrupt or otherwise interfere with authorized and scheduled university activities. Use of a free expression area is generally available between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday and must be scheduled through the Student Union and Activities Office to best accommodate all interested users. Requests are considered on a first-come, first-serve basis.

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Yellow Light Policies
  • Harassment Policy

    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies
    Last updated: July 28, 2016

    Harassment is defined as verbal or physical conduct that denigrates or shows hostility or aversion toward an individual because of race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, national origin, age or disability or that of their relatives, friends or associates, and that:

    • Has the purpose or effect of creating an intimidating, hostile or offensive work or study environment; or
    • Has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with an individual’s work or study performance; or
    • Otherwise adversely affects an individual’s employment or study opportunities.

    Examples of harassing conduct include, but are not limited to the following:

    • Epithets, slurs, negative stereotyping, or threatening, intimidating or hostile acts that relate to race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, national origin, age or disability; and
    • Written or graphic material that does not serve an academic purpose that denigrates or shows hostility or aversion toward an individual or group because of race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, national origin, age or disability and that is placed on walls, bulletin boards or elsewhere on university premises or circulated in the workplace or the classroom

    Pursuant to Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and Title IX of the Educational Amendments of 1972, “sexual harassment” is defined as unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal and physical conduct of a sexual nature when: … such conduct has the purpose or effect of interfering with the individual’s work or educational performance; of creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive working and/or learning environment; or of interfering with one’s ability to participate in or benefit from an educational program or activity.

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  • Student Sexual Misconduct Policy

    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies
    Last updated: July 28, 2016

    Armstrong maintains a policy of zero tolerance for sexual misconduct, meaning Armstrong will address all unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature, regardless of the sexual orientation or gender identity of individuals engaging in sexual activity.

    Sexual Harassment is defined as unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature. Armstrong will promptly and effectively remedy all instances of reported sexual harassment by providing resources to the alleged victim and addressing the effects on the alleged victim and the community. To warrant the imposition of disciplinary measures on a harasser, sexual harassment must meet the definition of hostile environment, quid pro quo or retaliation defined immediately below:

    a. Hostile Environment includes situations where harassment is sufficiently severe, pervasive or persistent, and/or offensive that it unreasonably interferes with, limits or denies the ability to participate in or benefit from Armstrong’s educational or employment programs or activities.

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  • Code of Student Integrity: Prohibited Conduct and Procedures- Intimidation, Bullying, or Harassment

    Speech Code Category: Bullying Policies
    Last updated: July 28, 2016

    Any act of intimidation, bullying, or harassment directed against any person or group of persons including, but not limited to, acts motivated by ethnicity, race, national origin, religion, gender (perceived or actual), gender identity, sexual orientation, disability, or political beliefs.

    » Read More


Green Light Policies
  • Armstrong State Revises Policy About Disabled and Sexual Consent

    July 17, 2015

    By Janel Davis at The Atlantic Journal A provision of a student sexual misconduct policy at Armstrong State University in Savannah has come under fire this week for appearing to say physically disabled students could not consent to sex. The overall policy follows that of many colleges, emphasizing that consent is required for any sexual activity. But a final provision regarding minors and people with disabilities garnered unwanted attention. “In addition, persons under the age of 16 and persons who have a physical and/or mental impairment are unable to give consent,” read a sentence from the policy in place since […]

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  • University Under Fire For Policy That Says Disabled Students Cannot Consent To Sex

    July 16, 2015

    By Meghan Keenan at Red Alert Politics A public college that is part of the University System of Georgia has attracted media attention for its policy that says physically disabled students are unable to consent to having sex. A sexual misconduct policy currently in effect at Armstrong State University says, “…persons under the age of 16 and persons who have a physical and/or mental impairment are unable to give consent.” This section of the policy seemingly refers to students who are physically or mentally disabled, as opposed to students who are impaired by alcohol, because intoxication is addressed in a […]

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  • Physically Disabled Students Can’t Give Sexual Consent, Wacky Georgia University Policy Says

    July 15, 2015

    By Greg Piper at The College Fix UPDATED First it was “incapacitated” students. Then it was “intoxicated” students. Now it’s students with a “physical … impairment”? Armstrong State University, part of the University System of Georgia, includes the head-scratching claim that physically disabled students cannot consent at all to sexual activities in its current student sexual misconduct policy: In addition, persons under the age of 16 and persons who have a physical and/or mental impairment are unable to give consent. The policy has been in effect since September but its full conditions apparently not noticed until now. Samantha Harris, director of policy research at the Foundation […]

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  • Georgia College Accidentally Bans Disabled From Having Sex

    July 15, 2015

    By Blake Neff at The Daily Caller A sexual assault policy currently in force at a Georgia public college appears to say the physically disabled are unable to consent to sex. The school in question is Armstrong State University, one of the many schools affiliated with the vast University System of Georgia. The school has a sexual assault policy that has been in force since September of last year, but has an unusual provision that just attracted notice. Like virtually every other sexual assault policy in the country, in college and otherwise Armstrong’s policy emphasizes that consent is required for […]

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  • FIRE Prompts Change In School’s Troubling Consent Policy For Disabled

    July 17, 2015

    Armstrong State University changed course this week after FIRE’s Director of Policy Research, Samantha Harris, called it out for a sexual misconduct policy that said disabled students couldn’t consent to sex. The policy stated, in part, that “persons who have a physical and/or mental impairment are unable to give consent.” On Wednesday, Samantha tweeted at the school, which is part of the University System of Georgia: Does @Armstrong_U really think the physically disabled can’t consent to sex? @AsheSchow @robbysoave @Popehat pic.twitter.com/3qyW8z5Uid — Samantha Harris (@SamatFIRE) July 15, 2015 The tweet prompted a report by the Washington Examiner, and by Thursday, […]

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  • Speech Code of the Month: Armstrong State University

    July 8, 2014

    FIRE announces its Speech Code of the Month for July 2014: Armstrong State University, a public university in the University System of Georgia.
    Armstrong’s list of student conduct offenses (PDF) includes, among other things:
    Sexual harassment (i.e., unwelcome sexual advances or conduct, creation of a hostile environment as perceived by the complainant, or the demand for sexual favors in return for some benefit.)

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  • Armstrong Atlantic State University, Student Newspaper Settle Lawsuit

    November 21, 2008

    After the Student Government Association (SGA) at Armstrong Atlantic State University (AASU) in Savannah, Ga., cut funding for the student newspaper The Inkwell by $14,760, editors for the paper filed suit against the university and the SGA for violation of their First Amendment rights. The Inkwell alleged that its budget was slashed because the SGA disapproved of several articles that criticized the university. As we reported on The Torch back in July, the lawsuit alleged that “Shortly after the start of the 2007–08 academic year, officials of AASU and of the AASU Student Government Association began a pattern of openly […]

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