Stop UK University Illegally Banning Free Speech
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Whilst we are eventually leaving Europe, we still have freedom of expression rights - not just under the Human Rights Act 1998 (article 10) but also the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (article 19). Yet, in a move that even prevents people publicly complaining about homophobic bullying, Edge Hill University is illegally restricting this, in breach of the Education (No. 2) Act 1986 with the following clause in its Student Code of Behaviour:
'A student must not intentionally or recklessly use the name of the University or any of its members in oral, written or electronic form (including social networking sites, fora and blogs) in such a way that either by content or expression it brings the good name of the University into disrepute.'
This clause has already been used against students who exercised their legal right to freedom of expression, in order to prevent them making complaints about the University. It is a 'chilling effect' clause and needs to be removed. Instead, it is being used to punish students who complain. It is an illegal way to prevent any kind of criticism of the University. The clause must be removed and students apologised to, particularly as the wording of the clause prevents students publicly complaining about harassment (even sexual harassment).
Someone could be subjected to bullying (e.g. homophobic bullying), and then if they're not taken seriously by the University, they're punished if they make their story public!
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