The following policy is intended to facilitate Indiana University and Maurer School of Law policies related to free expression and event planning. In the event of a conflict between them, campus and university policies control. Relevant campus and university policies include, but are not necessarily limited to:
- UA-14, The First Amendment at Indiana University
- UA-19, Event Management
- GR-01, Contact with State Officials, Federal Officials, and Political Campaigns, and Other Political Activities
- STU-01, Student Organizations
In addition, this policy is subordinate to the Maurer School of Law Academic Regulations, which govern Maurer student standards of conduct. The Academic Regulations incorporate by reference the IU Student Code of Conduct. Violations of policy by non-IU community members (i.e., the general public) are governed by IU’s UA-19, Event Management policy.
This policy applies to all events to be held on or after October 25, 2023.
Free speech and expression at the Maurer School of Law
Indiana University and Maurer are committed to the principles of free speech and expression, including controversial speech and expression. We encourage the vigorous and respectful exchange of ideas. Such principles are essential to the function of a law school in preparing students for their work as lawyers and advocates in a pluralistic democracy. As a Law School within a public university, Maurer does not limit speakers or visitors on the basis of their viewpoints or beliefs; but nor does the law school prohibit the expression of objections to the points of view of any speakers and/or visitors. An invitation by a Law School organization does not constitute the law school’s endorsement of any or all the speaker’s views or opinions.
Disruption of events
Disruption of events is not permitted and will be sanctioned according to applicable Law School and university policies. Examples of disruption include, but are not necessarily limited to, actions that:
- Have the effect of silencing a speaker, such as but not limited to heckling, making noise, blocking the line of sight from audience to speaker, blocking the speaker’s access to the event space, or interfering with equipment used to amplify the speaker’s voice;
- Have the effect of causing the event to violate the Maurer event policies, including by overcrowding the event space; raising volume levels beyond those appropriate for the event space; causing the event to extend beyond the time period scheduled; blocking ingress, egress, or passage to, from, or through the event space, including limiting accessibility for individuals with disabilities;
- Violate the policy on recording of events (see ‘Presentation Agreements and Copyright Releases’ section of the Student Organizations Handbook);
- Cause more than de minimis additional work on the part of event organizers as regards setup and takedown of the event (e.g., by littering or by disabling event materials);
- Have the effect of causing any individual to reasonably perceive a threat to that individual’s physical safety.
The following activities are not considered to be inappropriate disruption:
- Engaging in activities in time periods or physical spaces external to the event that do not disrupt the event and otherwise comply with Law School and university event policies;
- Holding signs in the event space that do not interfere with the event. As an example, protest signs might be displayed in the back of the event space, in a manner that does not interrupt the line of sight between participants and the activity;
- Distributing flyers;
- Participating in interactive components of the event in ways that are consistent with the event format (e.g., engagement during the question-and-answer period, if one is offered).
A ‘counter event’ (i.e., an event that is scheduled at the same time and in reaction to another scheduled event) or other programming that is not a protest is subject to the student event guidelines outlined in the Student Organization Handbook does not require a notification of protest.
Notification of intent to protest
Groups of students or student organizations that wish to plan a protest or demonstration in connection with a scheduled event must notify the Office for Student Affairs no later than 48 hours prior to the protest or demonstration of the event that is to occur and must follow any guidance provided by the Office for Student Affairs (see Appendix A below for instructions). The Office for Student Affairs may impose reasonable restrictions on such protests to prevent substantial disruptions to Law School operations, including excessive noise or crowding of spaces. An exception to this rule is allowed when an event being protested is registered and approved by the Office for Student Affairs less than 48 hours from its start date and time. The Law School calendar may be consulted for event times and dates. No protest activity by a student organization may occur until the Office for Student Affairs is notified.
Regulation of free speech and expressive activities generally
Consistent with Indiana Code 21-39-8 and IU Policy UA-14, The First Amendment at Indiana University, the Law School reserves the right to regulate in a reasonable and viewpoint-neutral manner the time, place, and manner of all free speech and expressive activities, including protest activities by individuals or student organizations, to protect public health, safety, and welfare, and to prevent the substantial disruption of its educational, research, outreach, and business functions, and normal or scheduled uses of Law School facilities.
Violations of this policy by students or student organizations may be subject to sanctions under the Indiana University Student Code, Section 9 of the Maurer School of Law Academic Regulations and the ‘Accountability’ subsection of the Maurer Student Organization Handbook, as well as a possible referral to city or state criminal investigators.
Failure by student organizations to notify the Office for Student Affairs as required by this policy, or to comply with any other applicable Law School or university policy, may result in denial of approval or cancellation of a proposed event or of an event already scheduled.
Violations of this policy by faculty and staff will be subject to the IU Academic Appointee Responsibilities and Conduct Policy ACA-33 as well as possible referral to city or state criminal authorities.
Violations of this policy by individuals not affiliated with IU Maurer may result in expulsion from Baier Hall and its grounds under UA-19 Event Management of Indiana University Policies, as well as possible referral to city or state criminal authorities.
Notice of planned protest should be made to firstname.lastname@example.org and the Associate Director for Student Life (email@example.com), with a subject header, “Protest of Event: [NAME OF EVENT]”, and include the following information:
- Name of organization planning the protest
- Name of individual submitting the notice, with Student ID number, e-mail address, and cell phone number
- Name of leaders of organization planning the protest
- Date, time, and location for the protest
- Anticipated number in attendance for the protest
- Description of the protest
- An acknowledgement that the protesting organization and its members have read and understand this Policy and IU Policy UA-14 The First Amendment at Indiana University.