Brandeis University: University Derecognizes Students for Justice in Palestine Chapter


Case Overview

On November 6, 2023, despite its strong commitments to freedom of expression and its 2018 adoption of a version of the Chicago Statement—the gold standard for free speech and academic freedom in higher education—Brandeis University became the first private university to ban a campus chapter of Students for Justice in Palestine. The same day, Brandeis University President Ronald Leibowitz wrote in the Boston Globe that student organizations, even when engaged in protected speech, should “lose all privileges associated with affiliation at their schools” if deemed anti-Semitic. FIRE urgently wrote Brandeis on November 7 pointing out that SJP had not engaged in any speech unprotected by Brandeis’s promises of free expression and called on the university to immediately reinstate the group.