Pro-life legal win changes US university’s policies

One of the largest university systems in the world is to revise policies which blocked a pro-life society from accessing funding, following a successful lawsuit.

In 2016-17, California State University denied Students for Life of America $500 to host a pro-life speaker, yet gave a total of $300,000 to the Gender Equity Center and the LGBTQA Pride Center.

A federal court ruled last year that the discrimination was unconstitutional, and now the university, which educates almost half a million people, is to pay $240,000 in costs and will revise its policies.


Students for Life of America is the country’s largest pro-life student organisation, with over 1,225 groups across the US.

President Kristan Hawkins said: “Public universities have no right to use their power, including mandatory student fees, to restrict or silence speech they don’t like”.

Caleb Dalton, of religious liberty group Alliance Defending Freedom, commented: “Public universities should encourage all students to participate in the free exchange of ideas, not create elaborate and secretive funding schemes to fund their favourite groups while excluding opposing views from equal access”.

Government action

Last month, the UK Education Secretary warned that universities must stop restricting free speech or face Government intervention.

Writing in The Times, Gavin Williamson MP highlighted the worsening situation on some US campuses, and called for action to be taken in the UK.

He said that the Government has a responsibility to do “whatever necessary” to protect students’ rights to free speech.

Also see:

Students chatting

Office for Students defends free speech in no-platforming row

Pro-life groups blossom across UK universities

Free speech in universities

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