At its Wednesday night meeting, members of Ohio University Student Senate will vote on eight resolutions and two bills, including one about the “Freedom of Expression” policy.
One of the bills the senate will vote on demands that Ohio University make revisions to the interim “Freedom of Expression” policy. The other is to support the presidential administration of OU President Duane Nellis.
The “Freedom of Expression” bill calls for a rewrite of Ohio University Interim Policy 24.014. The policy generated opposition due to restricting students’ rights to protest inside campus buildings in the form of “demonstrations, rallies, public speech-making, picketing, sit-ins, marches, protests and similar assemblies.”
The revisions senate would demand aim to allow those forms of expression in campus properties with the stipulation that “users of university facilities and outdoor spaces must not engage in conduct that materially disrupts university operations and activities,” according to the bill.
Members of Student Senate and other groups have been skeptical about the policy.
Many senate members said the policy was broad, according to a Others said it did not define “disruptive” behavior well enough. They also expressed concerns that it did not describe consequences for violations of the policy.
Others defended the policy. They said the university did not intend to curtail free speech with the policy.
Two of the other proposed resolutions are to appoint senators, one to the Residence Life Commission and one to the Women’s Affairs Commission. There will also be a vote to appoint a member to the Committee on Community and Social Activity.
The remaining resolutions focus on internal affairs of the senate including ones that would make changes to the Rules and Procedures.