Montclair disbands 'Bias Education Response Taskforce' in free speech lawsuit settlement

Robert Schmad
Campus Reform

Excerpt: Alliance Defending Freedom, a non-profit Christian legal advocacy group, just scored a significant victory for students' freedom of speech at Montclair State University.

ADF attorneys claimed that several policies enforced by the university violated student’s rights under the 1st and 14th amendments. Rather than taking the case to trial, both parties reached a settlement this summer that will result in the effective repeal of the rules the ADF took issue with.

There were three university rules that the ADF said the New Jersey school was unconstitutionally imposing within the context of it being a public institution. In one rule, the university required students to obtain permission from university staff two weeks prior to holding an event in which they would speak publicly. In a second, the university maintained a “Bias Education Response Taskforce” to punish speech determined to be “motivated by bias or prejudice.” In a third rule, Montclair’s student government association created a "class" system for student organizations that could be used to inhibit the ability of clubs to obtain funding, according to the lawsuit.