Demonstrations Policy

It is clearly inevitable, and indeed essential, that the spirit of inquiry and challenge that the university seeks to encourage will produce many conflicts of ideas, opinions and proposals for action. The university community recognizes its responsibility to provide effective channels for internal communication, free discussion and rational persuasion as the normal and preferred means of airing and reconciling such differences. On occasion, recourse to public demonstration and protest may become, for some, a necessary and justified means of supporting their cause or position.

In such cases, the university must seek to ensure a fair and reasonable balance and coordination between two sets of rights that are brought into conflict with one another. The first is the right of the members of the university community freely to pursue their academic and vocational objectives without unreasonable obstruction or hindrance. The second is the right of the members of the university community freely to communicate, by lawful demonstration and protest, the positions that they conscientiously espouse on vital issues of the day.

The university endorses both sets of rights and believes that each can be fully exercised without serious damage to the other. The use of the University forum does not imply acceptance or endorsement by the University of the views expressed.

In order to establish an environment that enables both sets of rights and ensures that each can be fully exercised without serious damage to the other, the following procedures govern on-campus Demonstrations. 

a. Leadership and Prior Approval

A member of the Marquette University community (student, faculty or staff member) must be designated Organizer/Liaison for each protest/demonstration (the “Event”).

The Organizer/Liaison must meet with the Dean of Students or designee to coordinate the planned Event and is encouraged to schedule this meeting well in advance. To schedule this meeting, the organizer must contact the Dean of Students office. If the Organizer/Liaison is planning the Event on behalf of a recognized club or organization, the advisor to the club or organization should is strongly encouraged to attend this meeting as well.

The Dean of Students/designate will meet with the organizer (and advisor, if relevant) within one business day of the request. The planned Event may be scheduled no fewer than two business days after this meeting is held. This two-day period may be extended at the discretion of the University if additional planning or preparation time is needed. Organizers should therefore plan accordingly and submit proposals as early as possible before the anticipated Event date. The meeting with the Dean/designate will be to review the details of the proposed Event including proposed time, place, manner and planned size of the event. Accordingly, expectations, rights, responsibilities, and logistical considerations will be discussed. In conjunction with this meeting, the Organizer/Liaison with submit a “Demonstration Proposal” form. This form is available through Marquette Involvement Link (URL). Following this meeting, if all parties are in agreement regarding the substance of the proposed Event and the institutional expectations, the Event will be approved and the Proposal Form will be shared with relevant campus offices.

Reservation of campus space for any Event will be contingent upon availability. Space cannot be reserved without approval.

b. Measures to ensure safety and security

All students who are members of the University community have the right to peaceful demonstration (including, but not limited to, rallies, gatherings, protests, parades, and processions) on campus. However, disruptive demonstration, here defined as any demonstration that unreasonably interferes with the rights or safety of others, is strictly prohibited.

In order to avoid any misunderstanding of what is a peaceful demonstration (permitted) and what is a disruptive or unsafe demonstration (prohibited), the following non-exhaustive list of characteristics is provided.

A demonstration is disruptive or unsafe if it includes any activity that:

Additionally, the following rules will govern any on campus demonstration:

1. Maintain Peace and Order

2. Presence of University Officials

3. Responsibly Conclude the Demonstration




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