Excerpt: A bill introduced by Republican state lawmakers would punish Wisconsin state universities and technical colleges for free speech or academic freedom violations. Campuses found to be in violation of the law would face financial penalties and potential lawsuits and would be forced to notify incoming students of any violations for the 10 years following the incident.
Wisconsin Republicans have been pushing the University of Wisconsin System to get tougher on students who disrupt free speech events on campuses since 2017. But the latest Republican initiative, introduced Thursday, focuses on punishing colleges and administrators rather than students. Under the new bill, any campus that restricts when and where speech can happen or charges a fee for "additional security based on the anticipated content of speech or anticipated reaction to speech" more than one time within 10 years will face a litany of sanctions.