Note on Free Speech

As a public institution, the University is dedicated to the robust exchange of ideas and is committed to protecting individuals’ freedom of speech and expression. This freedom is a constitutional right guaranteed by the First Amendment.

There are times when an expression of an idea or point of view may be offensive or inflammatory to some individuals and even bias-motivated, but it may not equate to a violation of law or University policy and may be protected by the First Amendment. Although it can be a difficult balance, the University is committed to honoring the constitutionally-protected right to freedom of expression, while also providing a safe and welcoming environment to its students, faculty, and staff.

The University will not tolerate threats, discrimination, harassment, or other violations of law or University policy. Freedom of speech and expression protects controversial ideas and words, which may at times be offensive and even hurtful to others, but the First Amendment does not protect personal threats or acts of misconduct, which violate criminal law or University policy.

In situations where words may be hurtful or offensive, but protected by the First Amendment, the University remains committed to supporting community members affected by those words. The Office of Civil Rights and Title IX will connect those individuals to available resources. The University is also committed to educating the University community on the presence and effects of bias on campus.

For more information about Freedom of Speech at UNC Charlotte, individuals can visit the UNC Charlotte Free Speech website.