GOP: Majority Leader Hagenow’s Capitol Update

September 9, 2019
By

Campus Free Speech

Universities have now resumed classes and college students are back to school. Across Iowa, these students are faced with many opportunities for the upcoming year and the future of their education. Each and every student attending our state’s universities should have equal opportunities on campus.

In recent years, we have seen stories about students whose views and values are not supported by the university system. Some of these individuals and campus groups have endured harassment and discrimination because of the beliefs that their organization hold.


Business Leaders in Christ (BLINC), a student group at the University of Iowa, were faced with this type of backlash and lost their affiliation with the university. BLINC, their members and their leadership hold traditional Christian beliefs and adhere to standards that are part of the foundation of the organization.  This is common practice for virtually every group on campus. However, university administrators targeted BLINC, likely due to its Christian worldview, and stripped the organization of its campus affiliation. It later came to light that the University was selective in its enforcement and didn’t penalize other groups with similar circumstances.

After losing their affiliation BLINC filed a lawsuit against the University and won. The court ruled that the University is not allowed to discriminate against student organizations based on their religion, and student organizations are allowed to base their organization’s constitution on their religious beliefs.

Last session, we passed a bill that protects the free speech and association rights of college students in Iowa who are attending our public institutions. With this new law, a university cannot deny a student group from existing as a university-sanctioned organization based on the beliefs and viewpoints of the members of that group.

The campus free speech bill that was passed also stated that our Regents universities must adopt specific policies in relation to free speech, which must state that the university will strive to ensure intellectual freedom and free expression.

This legislation was implemented to protect religious organizations as well as both left-leaning and right-leaning organizations on our college campuses.

It is important that college students are given the opportunity to have open and honest discussions, without being faced with the possibility of repercussions, academically or otherwise.

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GOP: Majority Leader Hagenow’s Capitol Update

September 9, 2019
By

Campus Free Speech

Universities have now resumed classes and college students are back to school. Across Iowa, these students are faced with many opportunities for the upcoming year and the future of their education. Each and every student attending our state’s universities should have equal opportunities on campus.

In recent years, we have seen stories about students whose views and values are not supported by the university system. Some of these individuals and campus groups have endured harassment and discrimination because of the beliefs that their organization hold.


Business Leaders in Christ (BLINC), a student group at the University of Iowa, were faced with this type of backlash and lost their affiliation with the university. BLINC, their members and their leadership hold traditional Christian beliefs and adhere to standards that are part of the foundation of the organization.  This is common practice for virtually every group on campus. However, university administrators targeted BLINC, likely due to its Christian worldview, and stripped the organization of its campus affiliation. It later came to light that the University was selective in its enforcement and didn’t penalize other groups with similar circumstances.

After losing their affiliation BLINC filed a lawsuit against the University and won. The court ruled that the University is not allowed to discriminate against student organizations based on their religion, and student organizations are allowed to base their organization’s constitution on their religious beliefs.

Last session, we passed a bill that protects the free speech and association rights of college students in Iowa who are attending our public institutions. With this new law, a university cannot deny a student group from existing as a university-sanctioned organization based on the beliefs and viewpoints of the members of that group.

The campus free speech bill that was passed also stated that our Regents universities must adopt specific policies in relation to free speech, which must state that the university will strive to ensure intellectual freedom and free expression.

This legislation was implemented to protect religious organizations as well as both left-leaning and right-leaning organizations on our college campuses.

It is important that college students are given the opportunity to have open and honest discussions, without being faced with the possibility of repercussions, academically or otherwise.

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail

Tags: ,

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