Sinclair Community College: Police Ban Signs at Religious Freedom Rally
On June 8, 2012, SCC's Traditional Values Club student group hosted an on-campus religious freedom rally to protest health coverage mandates from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. SCC police declared that signs of any kind, pro or con, were not allowed at the event and ordered all signs to be placed on the ground. SCC police reportedly have been banning signs at campus events at least since 1990. FIRE wrote to SCC on June 15, asking it to immediately reject this blatantly unconstitutional censorship. On July 6, the Thomas More Society, in discussion with FIRE and working with Ohio attorneys Curt C. Hartman, Christopher P. Finney, and Bradley M. Gibson, brought a First Amendment lawsuit against SCC in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Ohio.
- "Victory: Ohio College Settles First Amendment Lawsuit, Scraps Speech Code," March 12, 2013: After censoring a “Stand Up for Religious Freedom” rally held to oppose federal government mandates regarding abortion and contraception, Ohio’s Sinclair Community College (SCC) has settled a First Amendment lawsuit by revising an unconstitutional speech code that prohibited students and visitors from holding signs on campus. The plaintiffs’ attorneys confirmed this week that the terms of the settlement have been accepted by the Ohio Attorney General’s Office.
- "Sinclair Communicty College Campus Access Policy," February 20, 2013
- "'Deddens v. Warren County Montgomery County Community College District' Settlement Agreement, February 19, 2013," February 19, 2013
- "Ohio College Sued for Censoring Pro-Life Event," July 6, 2012: Ohio's Sinclair Community College is the target of a First Amendment lawsuit today following the college's brazen violation of students' First Amendment rights. At an on-campus rally protesting new health coverage mandates from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, police officers forced event attendees and participants to put away their handheld signs communicating the protesters' message, citing the college's speech code.
- "Complaint in 'Deddens v. Sinclair Community College,' US District Court for the Southern District of Ohio, July 6, 2012," July 6, 2012
- "FIRE letter to Sinclair Community College, June 15, 2012," June 15, 2012
- "Photo of sign ban enforcement by Sinclair Police Department, June 8, 2012," June 8, 2012
- "Sinclair Clarion front page, March 13, 2012," March 13, 2012
- "Victory: Ohio College Settles First Amendment Lawsuit, Scraps Speech Code," March 12, 2013
- "'Leaked' Sinclair CC 'Memo' Explains Terrorism Concerns Behind Sign Ban ," by Robert Shibley, July 18, 2012
- "Sinclair Community College: Signs Just Too Dangerous for Campus," by Jordan Von Bokern, July 17, 2012
- "Sinclair Community College: Enforcing Unconstitutional Sign Policy for Decades," by Jaclyn Hall, June 28, 2012
- "‘Signs of trouble for free speech at Sinclair CC’," by Robert Shibley, June 25, 2012
- "Sinclair CC Students: Have You Been Censored by SCC’s Sign Ban? Tell FIRE!," by Peter Bonilla, June 22, 2012
- "Sinclair CC Police Ban Signs at Religious Freedom Rally," by Peter Bonilla, June 19, 2012
- "Sinclair settles suit over sign,"
by Meagan Pant, Dayton Daily News, March 12, 2013
- "U. of Cincinnati loses free speech lawsuit - is another Ohio college next?,"
by Robert Shibley, The Daily Caller, August 23, 2012
- "Sinclair students sue over protest sign ban,"
by Tom Beyerlein and Meagan Pant, Dayton Daily News, July 14, 2012