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Universities: Freedom of Expression

Question for Department for Education

UIN 132444, tabled on 14 March 2018

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what steps he is taking to tackle no platform practices at universities.

Answered on

22 March 2018

The government does not support blanket no-platforming of individuals or organisations who are legally exercising their right to freedom of speech.

Universities have a legal duty to take reasonable steps to ensure freedom of speech, including for visiting speakers under the Education Act (No 2) 1986. We extended this duty through the Higher Education and Research Act to cover all providers registered with the Office for Students.

The Office for Students will also play a role in championing free speech, which is built into its regulatory framework.