FREDERICKSBURG, VA and MUNCIE, IN (9-05-18)–Reacting to a settlement with Ball State University over its denial of student fees to Ball State Students for Life, Kristan Hawkins, president of Students for Life of America said, “Today is a victory for the First Amendment, as Ball State finally has agreed to stop discriminating against Students for Life. Their policy was wrong from the beginning, and they never should have been allowed to ban money from going to religious and political groups in the first place. We are thankful for Ball State Students for Life and our attorneys at Alliance Defending Freedom for standing up for what is right. Pregnant and parenting students deserve to know that people are ready to help them succeed at school and at home.”
Ball State Students for Life was denied $300 in requested funding from Student Government for a Pregnant on Campus event and materials. Pregnant on Campus is an initiative of Student for Life of America, and it’s goal is to transform campuses into places where young women don’t have to choose between their education and the life of their child. With the help of Alliance Defending Freedom, Ball State SFL filed a lawsuit against the university. Recently, Ball State Students for Life achieved another victory, by working with the administration to institute a new policy on parking permits for pregnant students.
“Public universities are supposed to provide a marketplace of ideas, but that market can’t function properly if university officials promote some views over others,” said ADF Legal Counsel Caleb Dalton. “Ball State has taken some important first steps in eliminating the most blatantly unconstitutional aspects of their policies and honoring its intent to ‘respect and learn from differences in people, ideas, and opinions.’ We sincerely hope this serves as a catalyst to review all policies to maximize the free exchange of ideas at BSU.”
This is another free-speech victory for Students for Life this year. In March, Miami-University (Hamilton) agreed to stop mandating trigger warnings on so-called “controversial displays.
To read more about the 9 most common violations of student free speech, click here to read Hawkins’ op-ed in the Wall Street Journal. For an interactive map of vandalizations that have impacted students nationwide, click here and here.
For interview or analysis, please contact Kristi Hamrick at [email protected]