Professor blasts ‘dismal failure’ of universities to defend free speech

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Professor Selina Todd said that discussion and debate are often stifled as universities’ free speech policies are often directly contradicted by diversity policies which override them.

Her comments came as the Government announced a range of tough new measures to ensure that free speech is not restricted at universities.

Speaking on BBC Radio 4, Prof Todd said that while Oxford does have a “very good” free speech policy, “it completely conflicts with our diversity policies”, explaining that lobby groups like Stonewall “pressurise institutions to write policies that say you cannot have debate on certain issues”.