Higher Education: Freedom of Expression

Department for Business, Innovation and Skills written question – answered on 5th February 2015.

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Photo of Baroness Tonge Baroness Tonge Independent Liberal Democrat

To ask Her Majesty’s Government what action they plan to take to safeguard the principle of free speech in university campuses in the United Kingdom.

Photo of Baroness Williams of Trafford Baroness Williams of Trafford Lords Spokesperson (Department of Business, Innovation and Skills), Baroness in Waiting (HM Household) (Whip)

The Counter-Terrorism and Security Bill proposes new measures to reduce the risk of terrorism; these measures, if agreed by Parliament, will in turn reduce the threat terrorism poses to freedom of speech in universities and elsewhere.

The detailed guidance on the proposed new duty, to have regard to the need to prevent people being drawn into terrorism, is currently subject to consultation. The Government expects to revise the guidance in the light of the consultation to make clearer universities’ duty to promote freedom of speech.

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