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External Speakers Guidance

Each students' union or association has a responsibility to keep students free from harm while facilitating freedom of speech. This section outlines how NUS helps students’ unions to understand the role they play as public institutions in keeping their students free from hate speech and understanding their legal responsibilities with events and external speakers. This section provides information for students’ unions regarding how to set up a policy on mitigating risk with external speakers, how to effectively navigate between hate speech, and freedom from harm and freedom of speech as well as helping students’ unions to assess their own platform policies. 

Mitigating risk with external speakers

NUS’ Mitigating Risk guidance seeks to provide information and advice for students’ unions on:

  • Considering their legal implications as charities
  • How to manage associated risks of external speakers at events organised by the students’ union (including clubs and societies)
  • Facilitating students' self-organisation in the context of above

Managing the risks associated with external speakers - England and Wales

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Managing the risks associated with external speakers - England and Wales (Second Edition)

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Managing the risks associated with external speakers - Scotland

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Refer to these guidance documents to understand your union or societies role regarding external speakers and issues of:

  • Hate speech
  • Freedom of speech
  • Freedom from harm

No platform

This briefing explains these policies and details legal advice on the use of No Platform policies within students’ unions.

No Platform Briefing

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