Statement on Free Speech and Expression

Freedom of speech and expression are central to the mission of Boston University. The University has a responsibility to allow and safeguard the airing of the full spectrum of opinions on its campuses and to create an environment where ideas can be freely expressed and challenged. Boston University is committed to the academic freedom of its faculty as articulated in the Faculty Handbook and to preparing students to engage thoughtfully, openly, and effectively in disagreement and debate.

The University is committed to creating and maintaining a community that invites the full participation of all people and the expression of all viewpoints. The University believes that freedom of speech and expression are essential to, and compatible with, the principles articulated in Boston University’s Statement on Diversity. The University embraces the guiding principle that the remedy for speech that some may find hurtful, offensive, or even hateful is not suppression of speech, but more speech.

Freedom of speech and expression are not without limits. University policies regarding the time, place, and manner of speech and of expression ensure that the University can carry on its ordinary activities. The University may also restrict speech or expression that breaks the law, violates University policies or codes of conduct, or is otherwise directly incompatible with the safety of the community or the functioning of the University.

For guidelines on the use of campus space for organized expressions of free speech, please see the University’s policy on events and demonstrations