UC Berkeley to stop ‘tax’ on conservative speakers in major settlement

University of California Berkeley will change policies that effectively blocked conservative speakers, no longer charge exorbitant security fees, and pay the plaintiffs’ legal expenses in a settlement with two conservative groups.

The settlement announced Monday was hailed as a victory by Young America’s Foundation (YAF) and the Berkeley College Republicans, who sued the university in 2017 over what they argued were unconstitutional practices restricting conservatives’ freedom of speech.

“This is a landmark free speech victory for all students at UC Berkeley,” Harmeet Dhillon, the attorney representing YAF, said on Monday. “We wanted a settlement that doesn’t benefit just conservative students, but all students.”