Access, Solicitations, and Demonstrations

The University of Massachusetts recognizes the rights of members of the University community to freedom of assembly and speech, and strongly believes in fostering discourse and the free exchange of ideas at the University. However, as a matter of law and University policy, these rights and interests are restricted, and must be exercised on University property in a manner consistent with the mission and operation of the University and the rights of other members of the University community. Demonstrators will be held accountable for any actions which violate University Policy and Regulations.

Guidelines include but are not limited to:

  • Demonstrations may not include material that will disrupt or interfere with instructional activities, other University business and campus events;
  • Demonstrations may not include actual or threats of physical violence, or other forms of harassment, or destruction of University, other public or private property;
  • Demonstrations must not interference with free entry to or exit from University facilities and free movement by individuals; and
  • Demonstrations may not interfere with the rights of other members of the University community to freedom of speech and assembly, and other rights.
  • Demonstrations are limited to appropriate public forums, which do not include, among other locations, faculty and administrative offices, classrooms and other instructional facilities. (Public forums are locations which by tradition or policy are available for public assembly and speech – such as a student union lobby where students have traditionally gathered to debate issues.) To the extent that a public forum exists within a University building, any demonstrations within that forum shall take place only during the building’s normal operating hours.
  • Where appropriate, the University shall endeavor to maintain open lines of communication with demonstrators and to provide opportunities for discussion of matters in dispute so long as the demonstrators act consistent with University policy and the rights of others. However, as a general rule, the University shall not negotiate with individuals who occupy any University facility, or with associated demonstrators, while any such occupation continues, and shall never negotiate within an occupied facility.

These guidelines are intended to support, not supplant, existing University policy. They apply to all members of the University community, including undergraduates, graduate students and employees, as well as guests and visitors.

Please see Human Resource; General Administration Policy #06.05.00 as found at

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