A recent report from administrators at the University of Missouri reveals the school’s plan to restrict access to the public campus in order to prevent protests.
According to several reports, the University of Missouri experienced a 20 percent decline in enrollment and a $32 mil deficit after racially-charged protests at the school made national headlines. The University’s mishandling of the protests ultimately led to the resignation of the University System President and Chancellor as well as the termination of Professor Melissa Click, who threatened a student journalist.
The report, which was published on May 23rd, redesignates the public university as a place used strictly for academic work. It also calls for enforcement of a decades-old rule that restricts student protests that occur on restricted areas of campus, such as in administrative buildings. “Except as provided by Missouri statutory law, University property is not a place of unrestricted public access,” says the report. “All [Mizzou] outdoor spaces … are subject to reasonable time, place and manner regulations.”
Despite the restrictions, the University also reaffirmed their commitment to free expression, stating that “freedom of expression and the right to peaceably assemble, protest, and dissent are fundamental values of the University.”
The report also claims that the University will act to protect dissidents in instances where serious disruptions are anticipated. “Where serious disruption is anticipated, the University will … protect the speaker and the right of the audience to hear the speech.”