University of Illinois at Springfield

Location: Springfield, Illinois
Website: http://www.uis.edu
Type: Public
Federal Circuit: 7th Circuit

Speech Code Rating

University of Illinois at Springfield 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.

Red Light Policies

  • UIS Sexual Harassment Policy 14-15

    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies
    Last updated: March 20, 2015

    Sexual harassment:

    1. must be of a sexual nature;
    2. must be perceived as unwelcome or unwanted;
    3. must be persistent or pervasive, though unwelcome
    4. can be quid pro quo, something in exchange for something
    5. may be an element of discrimination based on sex; demeaning or diminishing bsaed on sex or gender

    It may consist of conduct which is verbal and/or physical. Examples of verbal harassment include sexual innuendoes, sexual remarks about one’s clothing or body, suggestive or insulting sounds, whistling in a suggestive manner, and implied or overt sexual propositions, invitations, or pressure for sex.

    Under this policy, sexual harassment also includes “unsolicited, deliberate, or repeated sexually explicit derogatory statements, gestures or physical contacts which are objectionable to the recipient and which cause discomfort or humiliation,” when such conduct is perpetrated by students upon other students, faculty, and/or staff.

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Yellow Light Policies
  • Acceptable Use of Information Technology Resources 14-15

    Speech Code Category: Internet Usage Policies
    Last updated: March 20, 2015

    All users must refrain from the following activities: … Using computing facilities to send obscene, abusive, threatening, defamatory, or harassing messages.

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  • Registered Student Organizations Handbook: Demonstrations/Rallies 14-15

    Speech Code Category: Protest and Demonstration Policies
    Last updated: March 20, 2015

    All demonstrations or peaceful assemblies must be registered with the Office of Student Life at least 48 hours in advance. Standard space reservation procedures must be followed for the use of any University space. Demonstrations or peaceful assemblies are generally defined as any public manifestation of welcome, approval, disapproval, protest, or conscience by a student or groups of students.

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  • Residence Life Community Handbook: Harassment and Stalking 14-15

    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies
    Last updated: March 20, 2015

    Harassment is defined as actions that create an intimidating, hostile or offensive environment for another individual in both a virtual and actual setting.

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  • Residence Life Community Guide: Holiday Decorating 14-15

    Speech Code Category: Posting and Distribution Policies
    Last updated: March 20, 2015

    The Office of Residence Life reserves the right to remove any unsafe or offensive decorations, and will charge residents for damages resulting from improperly displayed decorations.

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  • Guide to Residential Living: Inappropriate Behavior 14-15

    Speech Code Category: Other Speech Codes
    Last updated: March 20, 2015

    Campus residents are expected to respect the rights and property of others. Consequently, behavior or any actions that damage property or disturb others will be considered inappropriate in the Residence Life Community. Residents will be held judicially accountable for any behavior(s) deemed inappropriate by Residence Life Administration.

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  • Residence Life Community Handbook: Verbal Abuse 14-15

    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies
    Last updated: March 20, 2015

    Use of language that is perceived to be abusive, discriminatory or intimidating is considered verbal abuse. Students can be held accountable for verbal abuse communicated through forms of oral, written, telephone, or electronic (including email and social media), etc. It is expected that all members of the Residence Life Community refrain from abusive language in their interactions with residents, guests, and all University employees in all forms of communication.

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Green Light Policies
  • Student Grievances Policies 14-15

    Speech Code Category: Advertised Commitments to Free Expression
    Last updated: March 20, 2015

    University of Illinois at Springfield exists for the transmission of knowledge, the pursuit of truth, the development of students, and the general improvement of society. The Campus community has a responsibility to provide for its members those privileges, opportunities, and protections that best promote the pursuit of these goals. Free inquiry, free expression, and free association are indispensable to this effort. As members of the academic community, students should be encouraged to develop a capacity for critical thinking and to engage in a sustained and independent search for truth.

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  • Student Disciplinary Code 14-15

    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies
    Last updated: March 20, 2015

    The following categories of conduct are specifically prohibited and may form the basis for disciplinary action:

    A. Violence, the threat of violence, harassment, or intimidation directed against another person or persons.

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  • The Israel Debate on Campus Leaves Both Sides Feeling Victimized

    October 11, 2015

    By Nathan Guttman at The Forward  In the heated debate over Israel raging on college campuses, both sides are claiming the mantle of victimhood. Two recent reports published by pro-Palestinian groups that support the use of boycott, divestment and sanctions measures against Israel portray a troubling picture of students being intimidated by pro-Israel activists and of an organized effort to stifle debate on Middle East politics. These claims, supported by testimonies from students and faculty, and cases represented by Palestine Legal, a law center representing pro-Palestinian students, are, in many cases, a mirror image of those raised in recent years […]

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  • Teacher talk: Professors’ fight to speak openly often isn’t easy

    August 12, 2015

    By Mariana Viera at Student Press Law Center Having accepted a tenured professorship at the University of Illinois, Steven Salaita resigned from his job at Virginia Tech and was ready to go to the public institution’s Urbana-Champaign campus — until university officials rescinded their offer about three weeks before classes started. A month before his termination, Salaita, a Palestinian-American, posted a series of impassioned and controversial tweets criticizing Israel’s president and the country’s actions in Gaza. “#Israel has even bombed a few cemeteries. You know, just to make sure the “terrorists” are really dead. #Gaza #GazaUnderAttack,” Salaita said in one […]

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  • Freedom Of Speech Becomes Debatable Topic On Campus

    March 4, 2015

    By Anthony Antoine at IllinoisHomepage.net UNIVERSITY OF ILLINOIS — The UI made yet another list, but many aren’t so sure the school needs this type of recognition. The university was named one of the worst colleges for free speech. Some of the biggest changes in our country are the results of people utilizing the right to voice their opinion. With some tough conversations taking place at UI this past year, one department is reinforcing the importance of the First Amendment. The Journalism Department at UI launched a new series called “Free Speech: Rights and Responsibilities in a Digital Age.” Leaders […]

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  • FIRE warns multiple universities that political speech bans could be unconstitutional

    October 22, 2008

    By the Student Press Law Center The Foundation for Individual Rights in Education created a political activity policy for colleges and universities to abide by in response to a string of complaints accusing colleges across the country of silencing student and faculty political expression. FIRE, a nonprofit educational foundation, wants all public colleges and universities to acknowledge that students and student groups can express themselves politically on campus under the First Amendment and that faculty employees enjoy the right to engage in partisan political speech when occurring outside of their “employment-related” activities. FIRE released the statement of policy on political […]

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  • At U. of I., a question of supporting candidates on campus

    October 3, 2008

    By Megan Twohey at the Chicago Tribune Students and professors at the University of Illinois decided to rally for Barack Obama on the Urbana-Champaign campus Thursday to make clear their stand on an increasingly controversial question as the November elections approach: Is it legal for employees and students at state colleges to express support for political candidates while on campus? The university’s administration has sparked outrage by telling faculty, staff and graduate students that a 5-year-old state law designed to prevent state workers from campaigning for candidates on state time or with state resources meant they could not express support for […]

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  • U of I faces backlash after decision on campus political activity

    October 3, 2008

    By Megan Twohey at the Chicago Tribune Students and professors at the University of Illinois rallied for Barack Obama on the Urbana-Champaign campus Thursday – holding signs, passing out fliers and registering people to vote – to probe an increasingly controversial question as the November elections approach: Is it legal for employees and students at state colleges to express support for political candidates while on campus? The university’s administration has sparked outrage by informing faculty, staff and graduate students that a five-year-old state law designed to prevent state workers from campaigning for candidates on state time or with state resources meant […]

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  • U of I rally supports right to campus politicking

    October 3, 2008

    Claiming their rights to support political candidates are under assault, some University of Illinois faculty and students held a rally for Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama on campus to make their stand clear. The rally Thursday was staged after an official school statement informing the community that a state ethics law bars state workers from political activities on university property. “They’re trying to control our bodies and our voices any time we’re on campus,” said graduate student Dan Colson. “These policies are clearly a violation of our First Amendment rights.” The American Civil Liberties Union of Illinois sent a letter […]

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  • Repression of Political Speech and Activity Abounds on College Campuses in 2008

    December 24, 2008

    In an election year when the presidential race between Senators Barack Obama and John McCain dominated much of the country’s attention and media headlines, college and university campuses were certainly not immune to election fever. University students and faculty across the nation joined in the multitude of voices advocating for, criticizing, protesting, and otherwise commenting on the candidates and the hot-button issues of the season. With this came some regrettable consequences. This year, we witnessed a number of colleges and universities prohibiting and punishing many forms of constitutionally protected political speech and activity. While the rights of students and faculty […]

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  • Weekly Media Round-up: FIRE’s Policy Statement on Political Activity a Needed Voice of Reason on Campus

    October 17, 2008

    As Will wrote here on The Torch this Wednesday, FIRE released its 2008 Policy Statement on Political Activity on Campus this week. FIRE’s Policy Statement comes on the heels of controversial restrictions on protected political expression at such institutions as the University of Illinois, the University of Oklahoma, and the University of Texas at Austin, among others. The Policy Statement has drawn praise from students, teachers, and individuals and organizations of all different interests and persuasions (not to mention some of the more than one thousand members of FIRE’s Campus Freedom Network). Greg’s most recent column at The Huffington Post discusses […]

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  • With Election Weeks Away, Political Speech Under Attack on America’s Campuses

    October 15, 2008

    PHILADELPHIA, October 15, 2008—With the presidential race between John McCain and Barack Obama the focus of national attention, political speech on our nation’s campuses has come under sharp attack. In recent weeks, the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE) has investigated open and blatant attacks on political expression at colleges and universities across the country, from a previously unreported case at Oklahoma, to better-known cases at Illinois and Texas, to cases at smaller schools across the country. This alarming trend towards silencing political expression has prompted FIRE to release a Policy Statement on Political Activity on Campus today. At […]

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  • Stanley Fish Misunderstands FIRE on Illinois ‘Buttons’ Controversy

    October 14, 2008

    Although Stanley Fish says he agrees with FIRE most of the time, in his New York Times blog on Sunday he disagreed with us on the issue of a memo from the University of Illinois that banned university faculty from engaging in political activity on campus such as attending political rallies—even when they were off the clock. After widespread condemnation of the new policy including serious concerns expressed in a letter from FIRE, President B. Joseph White reversed the most serious violations in the policy, once again permitting faculty and staff to exercise most of their political rights on campus. […]

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  • National Attention Continues for FIRE’s Work at Illinois

    October 8, 2008

    We blogged last week about the Chicago Tribune‘s coverage of FIRE’s letter in defense of political expression at the three University of Illinois (UI) campuses, where a memo circulated by UI’s ethics office banned a wide variety of political expression on campuses—down to the bumper stickers on the cars of UI faculty and staff. Instead of waiting until our usual end-of-the-week media round-up, we wanted to provide a brief update on the continued media exposure to FIRE stemming from UI as the situation has developed. Over the weekend the Associated Press, picking up on the Tribune‘s lead, covered a rally […]

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  • University of Illinois Responds to Widespread Complaints Against Ban on Political Activity

    October 6, 2008

    FIRE, the ACLU, the AAUP, the National Association of Scholars, and the Illinois Association of Scholars all agree that the recent statement by the University of Illinois Ethics Office went too far in banning political expression and participation on University of Illinois campuses. Here is the response from University of Illinois president B. Joseph White in its entirety: To:     Members of the University Community From:   B. Joseph White Re:     A Message Concerning University Employees and the Illinois State Ethics Act I write to you today with a simple message: We, the leadership of the University of Illinois, will preserve, […]

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  • ‘Chicago Tribune’ Highlights FIRE’s Work Defending Political Speech

    October 3, 2008

    An article in today’s edition of the Chicago Tribune further investigates the outrage among many at the University of Illinois over the September 2008 edition of Ethics Matter, a “newsletter from the University of Illinois Ethics Office.” The memo, which has caused widespread outrage among faculty, suggests that a whole host of political activity is simply out of bounds for faculty members. As the article reports: The university’s administration has sparked outrage by telling faculty, staff and graduate students that a 5-year-old state law designed to prevent state workers from campaigning for candidates on state time or with state resources […]

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  • University of Illinois Bans Wide Variety of Political Activity by Faculty

    September 25, 2008

    The blogosphere and other media are lighting up in response to a memo circulated to faculty and staff of the University of Illinois by its University Ethics Office. The policy bans a wide variety of political activity on university property, including such research as “surveying or conducting an opinion poll related to anticipating an election outcome” and such activity as “wearing a pin or t-shirt in support of the Democratic Party or Republican Party.” Amazingly, even political bumper stickers run afoul of the policy. Talk about overbroad. While the university has a legitimate interest, as a state actor, in making […]

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