Kean University

Document Type

University Document

Publication Title

Free Speech and Dissent Policy


Kean University has a long-standing commitment to basic constitutional freedoms. These freedoms are important not only because they are guaranteed within the constitution, but also when considered in light of our University’s public dedication to the "transmission of knowledge, the pursuit of truth, the development of students, and the general well-being of society." The Kean University Bill of Rights and Responsibilities, adopted in 1972, affirms the commitment of the University to free speech and to dissent and recognizes the inherent link between these two. It underscores the importance within the educational process of the "search for truth and its free presentation" while extending to members of the campus community the right to "engage in non-violent demonstrations." The importance of the link between free speech and the right to dissent as well as the responsibility for orderly dissent is embodied in the statement that members of the community who wish to dissent have the "obligation not to interfere with any member’s freedom to hear and to study unpopular and controversial views on intellectual and public issues." Similarly the University Policy on Dissent and Campus Demonstrations, adopted in 1972, encourages members of the University community to "register their dissent from any condition, issue, or proposed action by any orderly means." The Policy on Dissent and Campus Demonstrations recognizes also that those who exercise their right to dissent have the responsibility to do so in ways that do not interfere with the basic freedoms of all members of the campus community. The statement presented in this document derives from and is consistent with the framework established within the University Bill of Rights and Responsibilities and the Policy on Dissent and Campus Demonstrations.

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