Stephen Franks on Massey University’s law breaking

Stephen Franks writes about how Massey University, and in particular the Vice-Chancellor, broke the law: Quote:

David?Farrar has a superb response?to Massey University?s authoritarian breach of a student group?s right to assemble peaceably, to hear from (and appraise), and to associate with whoever they choose. The ban happens to be by an inferior university apparently aiming to cement its inferiority internationally into the minds of all but a few post-modernists. That is a shame for the graduates who have to rely on its qualifications.? It is also a shame for New Zealand.

Michael?Reddell backgrounds the issues??with his usual penetration.

The move might have been dismissed as the aberration of a Vice Chancellor who had already displayed her analytical limits, but she appears to have been supported by her colleagues. Rather risky for them when the ban is aimed at one of New Zealand?s rare public intellectuals with genuine international credibility. Dr Brash gained international renown as Governor of the Reserve Bank when it was considered the best central bank in the world. Few of our intellectuals have actually successfully run major institutions.

Massey does not have a Law Faculty. But presumably they still spend hundreds of thousands on lawyers. Have they persuaded themselves that?s 161 of the Education Act 1989?is trumped by reciting a health and safety mantra???

The Free Speech Coalition?s next job seems likely to be to ask a court to tell us about the mystery safety-above-all provision that it appears Auckland Council and Massey University believe in.

But Massey has another obstacle. Have its Council or lawyers turned their minds to an unusually specific section in the Human Rights Act?? No section of that Act is more specific than section 57?s application to educational institutions. Read the relevant sections for yourself (emphasis mine).

57 Educational establishments

(1) It shall be unlawful for an educational establishment, or the authority responsible for the control of an educational establishment, or any person concerned in the management of an educational establishment or in teaching at an educational establishment,?

(a) to refuse or fail to admit a person as a pupil or student; or

(b) to admit a person as a pupil or a student on less favourable terms and conditions than would otherwise be made available; or

(c)?to deny or restrict access to any benefits or services provided by the establishment; or

(d)?to exclude a person?as a pupil or a student?or subject him or her to any other detriment,?

by reason of any of the prohibited grounds of discrimination.

(2) In this section,?educational establishment?includes an establishment offering any form of training or instruction and an educational establishment under the control of an organisation or association referred to in?section 40.

21?Prohibited grounds of discrimination

(1) For the purposes of this Act, the?prohibited grounds of discrimination?are:

???

(j) ??political opinion, which includes the lack of a particular political opinion or any political opinion: End quote.

Whoopsy. Looks like a judicial review is on the way.

I predict the Free Speech Coalition will morph into a civil liberties organisation and start holding these organisations and people to account.

There is no but in free speech. Time these bullies and opponents of free speech learned some lessons.

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