InterVarsity chapter reaches settlement with University of Wisconsin-Superior

Student group receives official recognition after filing lawsuit against unconstitutional actions by school officials
Friday, April 13, 2007

SUPERIOR, Wis. — The University of Wisconsin-Superior has agreed to settle a lawsuit brought by the Alliance Defense Fund Center for Academic Freedom on behalf of the InterVarsity Christian Fellowship chapter at the school.  University officials have agreed to formally recognize the chapter as part of the settlement agreement.

“America’s colleges and universities should recognize the constitutional rights of Christian student groups just as they do other student groups,” said ADF Senior Legal Counsel David French, director of the ADF Center for Academic Freedom.  “This settlement ensures that InterVarsity can determine its standards for leadership at UW-Superior without fear of losing access to student facilities and student fee funding which all other recognized campus groups enjoy.”

“This agreement also brings UW-Superior in line with where the 7th Circuit stands at present on such matters,” French added, referring to a July order from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 7th Circuit regarding a similar matter in which ADF was involved at Southern Illinois University.

ADF attorneys filed InterVarsity Christian Fellowship-UW Superior v. Walsh on Oct. 2.  On Nov. 15, the school agreed to a stipulated injunction that allowed the InterVarsity chapter to enjoy all the benefits of official recognition while the lawsuit moved forward.  As part of the settlement, the InterVarsity chapter will receive all of the student fees that it did not receive previously.

A copy of the settlement in InterVarsity Christian Fellowship-UW Superior v. Walsh, filed in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Wisconsin, can be read here.

The ADF Center for Academic Freedom is defending religious freedom at America’s public universities.  ADF is a legal alliance of Christian attorneys and like-minded organizations defending the right of people to freely live out their faith. Launched in 1994, ADF employs a unique combination of strategy, training, funding, and litigation to protect and preserve religious liberty, the sanctity of life, marriage, and the family.