Students for Life at Eastern Michigan University v. Parker
What's at stake
Students’ freedom to share pro-life ideas on campus
The right of students to have equal access to mandatory student fees
Students for Life is a student group at Eastern Michigan University--a voice for babies in the womb amid a sea of misinformation. The university required all students to pay a mandatory student fee each semester, which it used to fund student group activities. But the university refused to fund groups like Students for Life because it said they were too “controversial.”
Students for Life decided to host the Genocide Awareness Project on campus, a traveling photo mural that shows the parallels between abortion and genocide throughout world history. So Students for Life applied for funding from the mandatory student fees that the university requires all of its members to pay, expecting to receive funding for the event like other student groups on campus.
But Eastern Michigan University’s student government denied the funding request. It said that Students for Life’s event was too “biased,” “one-sided,” and “controversial.” This stunned Students for Life because its members have seen many biased, one-sided, and controversial events on campus. Students for Life asked the student government to reconsider its decision, but it refused.
Students for Life contacted Alliance Defending Freedom for help. Alliance Defending Freedom filed a lawsuit on behalf of the group and settled the case in Students for Life’s favor. Alliance Defending Freedom continues to fight for the rights of many student groups like Students for Life so that they can participate equally in the marketplace of ideas.
Our role in this case
Alliance Defending Freedom represented Students for Life in a lawsuit against the Eastern Michigan University, and defended its right to equal access to mandatory student fees.