Despite Tuesday’s news of the EEOC attack on Belmont Abbey College, overall this has been a quite good week for religious liberty on campus. On Monday, Boise State University settled a Christian Legal Society/Alliance Defense Fund suit challenging the university’s discriminatory student fee policies. As part of the settlement, the university agreed to change policies that barred religious groups (but not a self-described “atheist” organization) from obtaining student-fee funds and to permit a religious student group to select leaders who shared the group’s beliefs.
Wayne State University agreed to similar settlement this week after an Alliance Defense Fund suit challenging the school’s discriminatory treatment of a pro-life student group. The university had denied student-fee funds and facilities access to the group, and as part of the settlement not only rewrote its student-fee and facilities-use policies but paid the student group its lost fees.
While it’s a shame that either case had to go to court, the settlements are a signal that it’s not hard for any college to reach an agreement with pro-life and/or religious student groups — simply grant them the same rights everyone else enjoys, and the case goes away.