University of California

Location: Oakland, California
Type: No Type Yet

Speech Code Rating

University of California has not been given a speech code rating. To request speech code information about this school, please submit a speech code request form.
  • At present, FIRE does not maintain information on this school's policies.
  • Censorship Costs: University of California system lost $800,000 defending censorship of ‘The Koala’

    October 9, 2020

    In 2015, administrators at the University of California, San Diego, pressed their lawyers to find a “creative legal solution” to get around the pesky First Amendment rights of an abrasive, off-color student newspaper, The Koala, which had published an article satirizing “safe spaces.” Administrators found a “creative” solution that was too cute by half: because… Read more

  • Report: Top colleges and universities restrict rights of professional and student press

    August 6, 2020

    In a review of media policies at 25 top U.S. colleges and universities, a new report from the University of California’s National Center for Free Speech and Civic Engagement found that a majority of schools restrict press rights on campus in ways that harm the professional press, student press, and faculty. As documented in the… Read more

  • University of California Academic Senate, University of Illinois endorse free expression

    December 13, 2017

    This year has been an eventful and oftentimes tumultuous time for free speech on college campuses across the nation. Nowhere has this been more apparent than on the many campuses of the University of California system. Cognizant of the increasingly tense climate for free expression in higher education, the California legislature unanimously passed a resolution… Read more

  • Chemerinsky: First Amendment Must Be University of California’s Policy

    September 29, 2015

    Since University of California (UC) President Janet Napolitano announced in May that UC’s Board of Regents was voting on adopting new policies to combat intolerance on campus, the recommendations for these policies have gone from bad to worse. The Regents at one point considered adopting the State Department definition of anti-Semitism, which would have posed… Read more

  • Students and Regents Demand University of California Adopt Unconstitutional Policy

    September 18, 2015

    Yesterday, the University of California Board of Regents held an open meeting allowing students, faculty, members of the UC community, and other interested parties to share their thoughts on UC’s proposed Statement of Principles Against Intolerance. The statement came about after the UC Regents decided not to adopt the U.S. State Department’s definition of anti-Semitism…. Read more

  • State Department’s Anti-Semitism Definition Would Likely Violate First Amendment on Public Campuses

    May 22, 2015

    In a radio interview yesterday, University of California (UC) President Janet Napolitano stated that she believes the UC system should adopt the U.S. State Department’s definition of anti-Semitism. Responding to recent calls from rabbis, faculty, and alumni for the UC system to adopt the definition, Napolitano told Jeremy Hobson of Here & Now that the… Read more

  • South Carolina Lawmakers Campaign for Freedom of Association

    February 11, 2015

    Since the Supreme Court’s 2010 decision in Christian Legal Society v. Martinez, religious student organizations at colleges and universities across the country have struggled with a dilemma: accept all students as voting leaders or members in accordance with so-called “all-comers” policies, regardless of their agreement with the club’s beliefs, or forego official recognition by the… Read more

  • Former Regent Warns of UC’s ‘Disregard for Constitutional Rights’

    September 17, 2014

    Today is Constitution Day, and there is no better way to celebrate than by making sure you and your friends (and your enemies!) know your constitutional rights. Earlier this month, Velma Montoya, a former member of the University of California (UC) Board of Regents and former chairwoman of the California Advisory Committee to the U.S…. Read more

  • Debate Over North Carolina Religious Pluralism Law Continues

    July 22, 2014

    Four weeks after North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory signed into law a bill that allows religious and political student groups at the state’s public colleges and universities to limit their leadership to students who are committed to the group’s mission or faith, the debate continues over whether this was the right step to take to protect student rights. Last week, William R. Toler relayed some of the arguments for and against the bill in an article for The Richmond County Daily Journal.

  • Former University of California System President Gets Free Speech Right

    July 14, 2014

    Mark G. Yudof, the former president of the University of California (UC) system, recently weighed in on the state of free speech on the American college campus today. Pointing to this year’s “disinvitation season,” Yudof rightly lamented the tendency of too many students to advocate for or condone the suppression of ideas that they consider offensive or abhorrent. This message is especially welcome coming from the former head of an enormous public university system and a former constitutional law professor.

  • Reflections on Student Groups and Freedom of Association from ‘Unlearning Liberty’

    June 18, 2014

    The New York Times recently reported that colleges across the country are withdrawing recognition from campus Christian student groups that require candidates for leadership positions to subscribe to their Christian beliefs. This trend is taking shape in the wake of the Supreme Court’s decision in the 2010 case Christian Legal Society v. Martinez (PDF). That ruling held that the University of California Hastings College of the Law did not violate the First Amendment when it denied recognition to a Christian student group that required leadership candidates to affirm their belief in “biblical principles of sexual morality.”

  • Tyler Clementi Act: Still Well-Intentioned, Still a Threat to Free Expression

    March 31, 2014

    ‘The Huffington Post’ reported last week that Senator Patty Murray of Washington will reintroduce the Tyler Clementi Higher Education Anti-Harassment Act after learning of harassment suffered by one of her interns while attending college. The intern’s story is shocking, and the Act is well-intentioned. Unfortunately, it is still as flawed as it was when introduced by Senator Frank Lautenberg of New Jersey back in 2010 following the tragic death of Rutgers University student Tyler Clementi.

  • University of California System Protects Faculty Freedom of Speech

    August 1, 2013

    FIRE is pleased to note that the University of California (UC) Board of Regents has taken an important step to protect the expressive rights of its faculty. On July 18, it approved an amendment (PDF) to the Faculty Code of Conduct that gives professors the “freedom to address any matter of institutional policy or action when… Read more

  • Will Creeley on Hate Speech Rules in UC-San Diego Student Newspaper

    October 2, 2012

    FIRE’s Will Creeley has been interviewed for an article in the University of California, San Diego student newspaper, The Guardian. The article addresses the recent call for the University of California (UC) system to prohibit so-called “hate speech,” an effort that FIRE opposed as clearly unconstitutional. Thankfully, the story has a happy ending: UC President… Read more

  • ‘LA Times’ Quotes FIRE’s Will Creeley on UC ‘Hate Speech’ Issue

    September 19, 2012

    The Los Angeles Times published an interesting article yesterday on the issue of “anti-Semitism and anti-Muslim bias” on University of California (UC) campuses. Among other developments, the article covers that UC’s Advisory Council on Campus Climate, Culture and Inclusion issued formal recommendations this past summer to UC System President Mark Yudof that UC “push its… Read more

  • The Best Campus Climates are Those That Make People Think

    September 6, 2012

    In a piece published on The Chronicle of Higher Education‘s website last week, Boston College professor Alan Wolfe reminds readers that "[t]he best campus climates are those that make people think." We agree. However, as Wolfe points out, on two separate occasions in California this summer, administrative bodies forgot this truth when they called for… Read more

  • FIRE’s Creeley on ReasonTV: Why Banning ‘Hate Speech’ Doesn’t Work

    August 27, 2012

    Earlier this month, we brought news that University of California (UC) System President Mark Yudof had received a recommendation to implement a “hate speech” policy from a working group comprised of members of UC’s Advisory Council on Campus Climate, Culture and Inclusion. The recommendation asks Yudof to implement policies that fundamentally violate students’ expressive rights—including… Read more

  • Volokh on the University of California’s Proposed ‘Hate Speech’ Code

    August 14, 2012

    First Amendment guru, blog don, and law professor Eugene Volokh of UCLA School of Law has a post noting FIRE’s involvement in pushing back against a report from the University of California (UC) Advisory Council on Campus Climate, Culture, and Inclusion that recommends to UC System President Mark Yudof that UC adopt a “hate speech”… Read more

  • UC President Yudof’s Office Responds to FIRE’s Letter

    August 9, 2012

    Yesterday evening, FIRE was contacted by Steve Montiel, Media Relations Director for the University of California (UC) Office of the President, in response to yesterday’s FIRE letter to UC President Mark Yudof and the accompanying press release.   Montiel sent us a copy of a letter President Yudof sent yesterday to "Concerned Members of the… Read more

  • FIRE Warns U. of California President: Reject Recommendation, Don’t Pick Fight with First Amendment

    August 8, 2012

    OAKLAND, Calif., August 8, 2012—In a letter sent today, FIRE warns University of California System (UC) President Mark Yudof against enacting unconstitutional “hate speech” policies on UC’s campuses. FIRE’s letter responds to a recent recommendation from members of an official advisory body that, in response to alleged anti-Semitism on campus, UC “accept the challenge” of First Amendment litigation. FIRE urges President… Read more

  • University of California Advisory Panel to First Amendment: Bring It On

    August 3, 2012

    The Jewish Daily Forward is reporting a backward proposal in the University of California (UC) system. Motivated by concern for the environment for Jewish students on campus, UC President Mark G. Yudof’s Advisory Council on Campus Climate, Culture, and Inclusion released a July 9th report recommending the adoption of a hate speech code that would… Read more

  • A Roundup of 2011’s Free Speech Case Law

    December 28, 2011

    While FIRE has won numerous victories this year in working to protect individual rights on college campuses, 2011 was a mixed year for the defense of students’ rights by the courts. Importantly, this year highlighted divergent theories of the First Amendment rights of students off campus. While some courts have held that schools are limited… Read more

  • In Defining Harassment, Some University of California Schools Continue to Ignore System President

    November 23, 2011

    Back in October of 2009, University of California System president Mark Yudof issued a memorandum to all UC Chancellors announcing a systemwide policy change regarding the definition of discriminatory harassment in the educational context. Yudof’s memo noted that the prior UC harassment policies were “problematic for several reasons”—not least of which being the fact that… Read more

  • Reaping What Was Sowed by the Supreme Court in ‘Martinez’, Ninth Circuit’s Decision in ‘Alpha Delta’ is a Worrying One for Freedom of Association

    August 10, 2011

    Last week, Will covered the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit’s troublesome ruling (PDF) in Alpha Delta v. Reed, which upheld the decision of San Diego State University (SDSU) to deny official recognition to two student groups due to the groups’ requirement that members share their religious beliefs. SDSU argued that denial… Read more

  • This Month in FIRE History: Victory for Freedom of Association at Central Michigan University

    April 18, 2011

    In April 2007, FIRE won an important victory when Central Michigan University (CMU) reversed a policy banning ideological and political groups from “discriminating” on the basis of “political persuasion.” The case holds important lessons for freedom of association on campus that remain particularly relevant in light of last year’s 5-4 Supreme Court decision in Christian… Read more

  • Extensive Article on Controversy Over Campus Christian Groups in ‘Deseret News’

    April 14, 2011

    Michael De Groote of the Deseret News (Salt Lake City) has penned an extensive article about the controversy over Christian groups on campus and the Supreme Court’s decision last summer in CLS v. Martinez. The article includes a map from FIRE data as well as quotes from Greg and Adam. Check it out here.

  • Arizona Bill Would Allow Student Organizations to Exercise Expressive Association

    April 6, 2011

    Last month, House Bill 2625 passed both houses of the Arizona state legislature and is now awaiting the governor’s signature. The bill contains a provision that would require universities to allow religious and political student organizations to select members and leadership based on a commitment to the organization’s mission. This provision appears to be enacted… Read more

  • The Year of ‘Christian Legal Society v. Martinez’

    December 22, 2010

    From the start, 2010 was the year of Christian Legal Society v. Martinez. Perhaps more than any other case this year, developments surrounding Martinez occupied the docket of the Supreme Court, the time of FIRE staffers, and the inquiring mind of yours truly. FIRE had high hopes for Martinez. On January 1, we announced our… Read more

  • Greg Interviewed about the Dangerous Likelihood of Colleges Misinterpreting ‘CLS v. Martinez’

    August 19, 2010

    This June, in a 5-4 ruling, the Supreme Court upheld the constitutionality of the University of California Hastings College of the Law’s “all comers” policy in the case of Christian Legal Society v. Martinez. According to this ruling, a college can require all student groups to accept all prospective members and allow them to become… Read more

  • Student Groups Are in Danger — Help FIRE Defend Them!

    August 17, 2010

    Last week, I e-mailed FIRE’s supporters about the obstacles FIRE faces following the Supreme Court’s misguided decision in CLS v. Martinez. Today, I want to share the same message with you, our loyal Torch readers: Hopefully by now you have received my letter from last month explaining the considerable obstacle the Supreme Court placed in… Read more

  • Podcast: Greg Discusses ‘CLS v. Martinez’ with School Reform News

    August 9, 2010

    FIRE President Greg Lukianoff sat down recently with Ben Boychuk, Managing Editor of the Heartland Institute’s School Reform News, to discuss the Supreme Court’s disappointing ruling in CLS v. Martinez. Their conversation is now available as a free podcast, which you can download here (mp3).

  • Los Angeles College District Taken to Task for Misconstruing ‘Martinez’

    July 27, 2010

    Last week, I blogged about the threat of universities opportunistically mischaracterizing the Supreme Court’s recent decision in Christian Legal Society v. Martinez to justify their unconstitutional speech codes. Before the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, in the speech code case of Lopez v. Candaele, the Los Angeles Community College District (LACCD) has already done just that… Read more

  • Greg Baylor on the CFN Conference ‘Philosophy’ Panel

    July 22, 2010

    On Tuesday, I wrote a summary of what students experienced at the Third Annual Campus Freedom Network Conference. The same day, Greg Baylor, Senior Counsel for the Alliance Defense Fund, posted an excellent recounting of the “Philosophical and Practical Underpinnings of Academic Liberty” panel at the conference. He begins by noting Adam’s explanation of the utilitarian… Read more

  • Attention, University Counsel: Narrow Holding in ‘Martinez’ Is Irrelevant to Speech Code Cases

    July 21, 2010

    Well, that didn’t take long. In an unfortunate but not unexpected development, universities have already begun misguided attempts to exploit the Supreme Court’s recent decision in Christian Legal Society v. Martinez by citing it out of context to justify their unconstitutional speech codes. In a filing with the United States Court of Appeals for the… Read more

  • KC Johnson on What Comes After ‘CLS v. Martinez’

    July 12, 2010

    On Minding the Campus, FIRE friend and Brooklyn College professor KC Johnson asks an important question: Now that the Supreme Court has decided that an all-comers policy for student group membership is constitutionally acceptable, cui bono? Who benefits from this change? If you have been following FIRE for any length of time, I bet you… Read more

  • Nat Hentoff: Supreme Court Got ‘Martinez’ Wrong

    July 9, 2010

    Nat Hentoff, an ardent, principled defender of the First Amendment and a member of FIRE’s Board of Advisors, has written a column about how last week’s Christian Legal Society v. Martinez Supreme Court decision negatively impacts the First Amendment right to free association. Hentoff laments the Court’s “embrace of political correctness” in denying the Christian… Read more

  • Cathy Young on Why ‘Martinez’ is a Dangerous Precedent

    July 7, 2010

    On Reason‘s website, Cathy Young has a column about why the Supreme Court’s decision last week in Christian Legal Society v. Martinez could “set a dangerous precedent in sacrificing freedom for equality’s sake.” As Torch readers remember from our posts last week, the Supreme Court in Martinez upheld the University of California Hastings College of… Read more

  • In ‘Chronicle’ Article, Higher Education Experts Disavow the Notion that University Policies Are Safe After ‘Martinez’

    July 2, 2010

    An article in The Chronicle of Higher Education highlights the fact that the Supreme Court’s decision in Christian Legal Society v. Martinez probably has narrow applicability because it does not directly address the constitutionality of most universities’ policies, affirming what FIRE and others have been saying in response to the Court’s decision. Citing legal experts in… Read more

  • ‘Wall Street Journal’ and ‘L.A. Times’ Blast Supreme Court’s Decision in ‘CLS v. Martinez’

    July 2, 2010

    This week, both The Wall Street Journal and the Los Angeles Times published editorials echoing FIRE’s concerns about the Supreme Court’s recent decision in Christian Legal Society v. Martinez. On Wednesday, the Los Angeles Times eloquently made the case for freedom of association and succinctly challenged the wisdom of the “all-comers policy” the Court deemed constitutional:… Read more

  • The ‘Subsidy’ Is Not the Issue: The Incorrect Framing of ‘CLS v. Martinez’

    July 1, 2010

    One of the more common reactions in favor of the Supreme Court’s decision in Christian Legal Society v. Martinez—that a public university need not subsidize student groups that limit membership based on views that the university opposes—has intuitive appeal, but is antithetical to First Amendment principles. Those who agree with the Court’s decision, which upheld… Read more

  • SPLC’s Frank LoMonte Asks: How Might ‘CLS v. Martinez’ Affect Student Press?

    July 1, 2010

    The Student Press Law Center’s (SPLC’s) Adam Goldstein published a scathing, must-read assessment over at The Huffington Post of the Supreme Court’s 5-4 decision upholding the University of California Hastings College of the Law’s denial of official recognition to the Christian Legal Society (CLS) and affirming the constitutionality of Hastings’ all-comers policy for student organizations…. Read more

  • Dispute Over Scope of Hastings Policy Underscores Narrowness of ‘Martinez’ Decision

    June 30, 2010

    Muddying any straightforward understanding of Monday’s Supreme Court decision in Christian Legal Society v. Martinez is the fact that there were, at various times, at least two distinct policies at issue at the University of California Hastings College of the Law. The majority opinion, authored by Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, addressed Hastings’ “all comers” policy,… Read more

  • In ‘Martinez,’ Justice Ginsburg Disregards Serious Threat of Hostile Takeovers

    June 29, 2010

    As FIRE detailed in yesterday’s press release, the Supreme Court in Christian Legal Society v. Martinez upheld the University of California Hastings College of the Law’s denial of Registered Student Organization (RSO) status to the Christian Legal Society because the student group did not follow the school’s “all-comers” policy. This all-comers policy—which we’ll discuss further… Read more

  • Law Professor Richard Epstein Weighs in on ‘CLS v. Martinez’

    June 29, 2010

    FIRE has already provided one summary of the preliminary reactions to the Supreme Court’s decision in the case of Christian Legal Society v. Martinez, and the commentary continues to flow. Richard Epstein, the James Parker Hall Distinguished Service Professor of Law at the University of Chicago and the Laurence A. Tisch Professor of Law Designate… Read more

  • First Reactions to ‘CLS v. Martinez’

    June 28, 2010

    Reactions to today’s Supreme Court decision in Christian Legal Society v. Martinez have lit up the Web. The Chronicle of Higher Education and have posted articles detailing the case, and Reason‘s Jacob Sullum and the Cato Institute’s Roger Pilon have supplied summaries of the ruling. For our part, here’s FIRE President Greg Lukianoff’s response… Read more

  • Kennedy’s Concurrence in ‘Martinez’ Highlights Court’s Misguided Views on Role of Student Organizations

    June 28, 2010

    Justice Anthony Kennedy, a relative moderate on the Supreme Court and a swing vote in many 5-4 decisions, was the only non-liberal Justice to join the majority opinion in Christian Legal Society v. Martinez. He was most likely the decisive vote in today’s decision. He was the Justice to whom the parties and the other… Read more

  • In ‘CLS v. Martinez’ Ruling, Sharply Divided Supreme Court Undermines Freedom of Association on Campus

    June 28, 2010

    WASHINGTON, June 28, 2010—In a blow to freedom of association and religious liberty on campus, a sharply divided U.S. Supreme Court ruled today that a public university may require its student organizations to admit any student as a voting member or officer, regardless of whether that student openly disagrees with or is even hostile to… Read more

  • Supreme Court Decision in ‘CLS v. Martinez’ Expected Monday

    June 25, 2010

    The Supreme Court is expected to issue an opinion in Christian Legal Society v. Martinez on Monday, the last day of the Court’s current term. The First Amendment right to freedom of expressive association on our nation’s public college campuses hangs in the balance. As Torch readers will remember, the case concerns the University of California Hastings College of the Law’s… Read more

  • Supreme Court Oral Argument in ‘CLS v. Martinez,’ While Contentious, Transcended Ideology on Key Points

    April 20, 2010

    The Supreme Court heard oral argument yesterday in Christian Legal Society v. Martinez, the highly anticipated case concerning whether student organizations have a First Amendment right to exclude those who disagree with their beliefs from voting membership and leadership positions. The oral argument grappled with the tension between students’ freedom of association and a public… Read more

  • After Media Weighs In, Supreme Court Hears Oral Arguments in ‘CLS v. Martinez’

    April 19, 2010

    This morning, the Supreme Court returned from its April recess to hear oral arguments in Christian Legal Society v. Martinez, a crucial case for the First Amendment right of freedom of expressive association on campus. As frequent Torch readers will already know, we have followed the case closely, and FIRE was joined by Students for… Read more

  • FIRE Chairman Harvey Silverglate in the ‘Wall Street Journal’

    April 16, 2010

    FIRE Co-founder and Chairman Harvey Silverglate has written an editorial in today’s Wall Street Journal tackling the First Amendment issues at stake in the U.S. Supreme Court case of Christian Legal Society v. Martinez, which goes before the high court on Monday. Harvey asks: "Can a public university force a Christian student group to accept as leaders… Read more

  • ‘CLS v. Martinez’ Highlights Flaws in Universities’ Expansive Understanding of ‘Discrimination’

    March 23, 2010

    The upcoming Supreme Court case of Christian Legal Society v. Martinez highlights the fact that universities’ expansive understanding of "discrimination" erodes speech and associational rights. As society increasingly likens invidious discrimination on the basis of immutable characteristics like race, gender, or disability to discrimination on the basis of belief or viewpoint, we lose our ability… Read more

  • American Council on Education’s Supreme Court Brief Gets It Wrong on ‘Martinez’

    March 17, 2010

    The American Council on Education (ACE) and a coalition of other higher education organizations filed an amici curiae brief on Monday (.PDF) on behalf of University of California Hastings College of the Law in Christian Legal Society v. Martinez, the upcoming Supreme Court case for which FIRE filed its own amici brief in February with Students… Read more

  • ‘Christian Legal Society v. Martinez’ Case on

    February 12, 2010

    Last night, Samantha Harris appeared on the Talk to Solomon show on to discuss Christian Legal Society v. Martinez, a case before the Supreme Court of the United States concerning the University of California Hastings College of the Law‘s refusal to recognize the Christian Legal Society (CLS) as a registered student group. Samantha answered… Read more

  • ‘Cornell Daily Sun’ Explores Important Freedom of Association Issue, Previews Upcoming Supreme Court Decision in ‘Martinez’

    January 20, 2010

    An article in yesterday’s Cornell Daily Sun, a student newspaper at Cornell University, discusses the conflict between student organizations’ freedom of association and their schools’ nondiscrimination policies that has been at issue on many college campuses in recent years. Sun reporter Dani Neuharth-Keusch discusses the issue as it relates to an episode right on Cornell’s… Read more

  • 2009’s Struggle for Freedom of Association on Campus to be Resolved by Supreme Court in 2010

    January 1, 2010

    As FIRE’s Director of Legal and Public Advocacy, perhaps the most exciting thing to me about the New Year is the fact that in 2010, the Supreme Court of the United States has the opportunity to protect the First Amendment freedom of association rights enjoyed by student groups at public colleges and universities. By agreeing to… Read more

  • Supreme Court Agrees to Hear Hastings Law School Case; Right to Expressive Association on Campus Hangs in the Balance

    December 7, 2009

    Today, the Supreme Court of the United States granted certiorari in Christian Legal Society v. Martinez, an appeal of a March 2009 ruling by the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit rejecting a Christian student group’s constitutional challenge of the University of California at Hastings Law School’s nondiscrimination policy. The Ninth Circuit’s… Read more

  • University of Montana Christian Legal Society Files Suit

    January 2, 2008

    Yet another university has impermissibly denied recognition and student fees to the Christian Legal Society (CLS) because of CLS’ requirement that its voting members and officers ascribe to a Statement of Faith regulating, among other things, sexual behavior outside of marriage. On December 14, the CLS chapter at the University of Montana School of Law… Read more