On December 12, the Assembly Committee on Colleges and Universities held a public hearing on Assembly Bill 444 relating to free expression within the University of Wisconsin System. The committee heard testimony in support of the bill from Polly Olsen, a Northwest Wisconsin Technical College student. Olsen shared her story of upholding a family tradition of handing out Valentine's Day cards that say, "Jesus Loves You," to people on campus. However the school tried to stop her by arguing that she was soliciting. Olsen thinks that AB 444 could use some work but provides more check points that could help. "Now, we all admit, it's not perfect, it can grow, but I do see is a lot of checks and balances." In response to Olsen's testimony, committee member, Representative Katrina Shankland (D-Stevens Point), argued that this bill would negatively impact free speech. "While the guise of this legislation may be protecting free speech, I would argue the fact that any one could lodge a complaint against someone, founded or not, with no evidence or cause will chill free speech."
Watch the full program: https://wiseye.org/2019/12/12/assembly-committee-on-colleges-and-universities-26/