Florida resident Donna Dunbar can hold her weekly Bible study again after filing a Fair Housing Act complaint. A settlement mediated by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development allows her to use the condominium complex’s community social room for religious meetings, First Liberty announced last week. Cambridge House Condominiums in Port Charlotte, Fla., nixed the study after a 2018 board resolution prohibiting “prayers and other religious services, observations, or meetings of any nature … in or upon any of the common elements.” Dunbar, a lay minister in the Seventh-day Adventist Church, said she was “relieved that I can continue to meet with my friends to pray and study God’s Word together.” —S.W.
The California State University system settled with a pro-life student organization, agreeing to revise its student fee policies and pay more than $240,000 in damages and attorneys’ fees.
The settlement followed a federal judge’s decision last summer ruling that Cal State San Marcos discriminated against pro-life views in how it distributed mandatory fees to student-run organizations. U.S. District Judge M. James Lorenz found the school had engaged in “backroom deliberations” to provide $300,000 for a Gender Equity and LGBTQ Pride Center while declining to provide $500 for Students for Life to host Mike Adams, a well-known conservative pro-life speaker.
The agreement requires all 23 campuses of the Cal State system, which has nearly half a million students, to adjust their policies in 90 days to make sure student association funds for speech events are “viewpoint neutral.”
“We’re pleased that the court recognized the right of all students to be free from discrimination based on their viewpoint and that, as a result, the Cal State system will better align with the ‘inclusiveness’ and ‘individual and cultural diversity’ it touts within its community,” said Alliance Defending Freedom senior counsel Tyson Langhofer, whose firm represented Students for Life.
Cal State is not the first university system dinged for discriminatory use of student fees. In August 2019, the University of Florida similarly agreed to make policy changes after a Young Americans for Freedom chapter sued. —S.W.