Download – CAPA freedom of speech review submission
In this submission, we first provide our perspective on the context of the review, arguing that claims towards a crisis of freedom of speech are contrived and politically motivated. However, being that the review is underway, we provide our perspective on tensions relating to freedom of speech on campus. We argue that staff working conditions are threatened by the presence of hate speech, and that any sector-wide code of conduct relating to free speech must ensure that staff workplace rights are preserved. We comment on existing legislation relating to this, noting that the legislation itself is suitable, but that there are some genuine threats to intellectual freedom at universities owing to cuts to research and services due to severe federal funding reductions. We furthermore caution that secret ministerial interference in research funding allocations, as was discovered in late 2018, also endangers intellectual freedom.
Based on the above, we provide the following recommendations: