University of Kentucky

Location: Lexington, Kentucky
Type: Public
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Speech Code Rating

University of Kentucky has been given the speech code rating Yellow. Yellow light colleges and universities are those institutions with at least one ambiguous policy that too easily encourages administrative abuse and arbitrary application. Read more
  • Administrative Regulation 4:10: Code of Student Conduct- Bullying and Cyberbullying

    Speech Code Rating: Yellow
    Speech Code Category: Bullying Policies
    Last updated: June 25, 2019

    Bullying, including Cyberbullying, is repeated or hostile behaviors that a reasonable person would find intimidating or that would harm or distress another person, but fall short of being harassment. This provision shall not be used to discipline Students for speech protected by the First Amendment. Read More
  • Bias Incident Support Services: Report a Bias Incident

    Speech Code Rating: Yellow
    Speech Code Category: Policies on Bias and Hate Speech
    Last updated: June 25, 2019

    What is a Bias Incident? A bias incident is an activity or action against a person’s or group’s actual or perceived race, color, national origin, ethnic origin, religion, creed, age, physical or mental disability, veteran status, uniformed service, political belief, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender e... Read More
  • Administrative Regulation 9:2: Regulations Governing the Use of Facilities by Registered Student Organizations

    Speech Code Rating: Yellow
    Speech Code Category: Protest and Demonstration Policies
    Last updated: June 25, 2019

    2. In instances where non-University persons have been invited to speak or perform, where outdoor facilities are being requested, or where the capacity of the facility being requested is in excess of 100 persons, the reservations must be made on forms provided for that purpose. The form will show the organization... Read More
  • Administrative Regulation 4.10: Code of Student Conduct- Standards of Conduct

    Speech Code Rating: Yellow
    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies
    Last updated: June 25, 2019

    Harm and Threat of Harm includes physical abuse, verbal abuse, threats, intimidation, harassment, force, or other conduct that causes injury or a reasonable expectation of injury to the physical or mental health or safety of another person. Read More
  • University Rights of Students

    Speech Code Rating: Yellow
    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies
    Last updated: June 25, 2019

    Sexual harassment – a form of sex discrimination – includes unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, or other verbal or physical actions of a sexual nature when submission to such conduct is made explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of the Student’s status in a course, program or ac... Read More
  • Administrative Regulation 6:1: Policy on Discrimination and Harassment

    Speech Code Rating: Yellow
    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies
    Last updated: June 25, 2019

    Harassment, a form of discrimination, is unwelcome conduct that is based on [race, color, national origin, ethnic origin, religion, creed, age, physical or mental disability, veteran status, uniformed service, political belief, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, pregnancy, marital status, g... Read More
  • Administrative Regulation 4.10: Code of Student Conduct- Standards of Conduct

    Speech Code Rating: Green
    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies
    Last updated: June 25, 2019

    Harassment is unwelcome conduct that is so severe, pervasive, and objectively offensive that it substantially interferes with the ability of a person to work, learn, live or participate in, or benefit from services, activities, or privileges provided by UK. Read More
  • Administrative Regulation 9:1: Regulations Governing Time, Place, and Manner of Meetings, Demonstrations, and Other Assemblies (Interim Regulation)

    Speech Code Rating: Green
    Speech Code Category: Protest and Demonstration Policies
    Last updated: June 25, 2019

    Planned or spontaneous demonstrations, meetings, or assemblies may be conducted in those appropriate areas of the campus that are regularly available to the public, provided such demonstrations, meetings, or other assemblies: A. Are conducted in a lawful and peaceful manner; B. Do not prohibit vehicular or pedestria... Read More
  • Administrative Regulation 4:10: Code of Student Conduct- Right of Free Expression

    Speech Code Rating: Green
    Speech Code Category: Advertised Commitments to Free Expression
    Last updated: June 25, 2019

    A Student has the right to engage in discussion, to exchange thought and opinion, to speak, write, or print freely on any subject, and to join associations in accordance with the guarantees of federal or state Constitutions. Read More
At present, FIRE has not been publicly involved in any cases at this school.
  • Appeals court requires U. of Kentucky to submit redacted records

    May 21, 2019

    The University of Kentucky will have to provide redacted records of a Title IX investigation — and specific justifications for those redactions — to a state circuit court for review, after a ruling Friday by the Kentucky Court of Appeals. That amounts to a win for UK’s student newspaper, the Kentucky Kernel, which has been… Read more

  • Professor settles First Amendment lawsuit with University of Kentucky, UK to pay $620,000

    December 18, 2018

    In August 2017, Dr. Raynor Mullins, a faculty member at the University of Kentucky College of Dentistry, filed suit against UK alleging that the university violated his First Amendment rights by retaliating against him after he criticized Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin’s proposed Medicaid plan. Earlier this month, Mullins and UK settled the lawsuit for $620,000…. Read more

  • Speech Code of the Month: University of Kentucky

    May 22, 2018

    FIRE announces our Speech Code of the Month for May 2018: the University of Kentucky. The University of Kentucky’s Bias Incident Response Team threatens to seriously chill freedom of speech for the university’s more than 30,000 students and faculty. Bias response teams like Kentucky’s are burgeoning on campuses around the country. As FIRE exclusively reported… Read more

  • Judge Gets It Wrong in Kentucky Records Ruling

    January 25, 2017

    The University of Kentucky (UK) can withhold records related to the sexual assault claims made against a former professor under student privacy law, a judge ruled Monday—but the judge’s ruling doesn’t make sense under the law it cites. The records in question relate to university investigations of former Associate Professor of Entomology James Harwood, who… Read more

  • Federal Court: Campus Sexual Assault Hearings are ‘Quasi-Criminal’ in Nature

    January 20, 2016

    Earlier this week, a federal court dismissed a student’s lawsuit against University of Kentucky administrators under a doctrine requiring that federal courts defer to state proceedings under certain circumstances. The court’s decision turned on its conclusion that the student’s sexual misconduct hearing at the University of Kentucky was an official “state proceeding … akin to… Read more

  • University of Kentucky Offers Students First Amendment Violations in Two Flavors

    January 21, 2015

    The University of Kentucky (UK) has apparently failed to notice that universities are increasingly being forced to get rid of their ironically named “free speech zones,” whether by state legislation or costly lawsuits. UK currently maintains two “Designated Unrestricted Areas,” which constitute the small fraction of the campus where a reservation is not required for… Read more

  • FIRE’s Will Creeley Heads to Kentucky to Speak at UK, EKU

    April 1, 2013

    Tomorrow, FIRE’s Director of Legal and Public Advocacy Will Creeley heads to the Bluegrass State to discuss student rights at the University of Kentucky (UK) and Eastern Kentucky University (EKU). At both schools, Creeley will examine the state of the law on freedom of speech on today’s college campuses, discussing the decades of legal precedent… Read more

  • Know Your Rights: Kentucky Student Videotapes Search of Dormitory

    December 13, 2012

    On Monday, a University of Kentucky student posted a video on YouTube that showed him berating some police officers who entered his dormitory, according to Photography is Not a Crime. Warning: the video includes profanity. According to Tyler Kingkade of The Huffington Post, the University of Kentucky has now fired the police officer in question, which makes… Read more

  • Did Somebody Say ‘Gazongas’? You’re Busted!

    August 22, 2012

    There’s a movement afoot in state legislatures to ban employers and universities from demanding control of or monitoring the social media accounts of their students or employees. One such bill specifically aimed at students unanimously passed the California Senate yesterday. Advocates of these laws justifiably worry that, when students are required to provide their usernames… Read more

  • ‘Inside Higher Ed’ on Rash of Newspaper Thefts; Latest at University of Kentucky

    November 15, 2006

    Another week, another newspaper theft on campus. Inside Higher Ed reports today that 4,500 copies of the Kentucky Kernel, the University of Kentucky’s student newspaper, were stolen on Monday, becoming the latest example of a disturbing trend on campus.  As Tara reported just last Thursday, newspaper thefts have occurred in the past few weeks at… Read more