News

NCAC, ACLU-AZ caution of pyrrhic victory as Mesa vows tighter controls over its arts center

By |2023-09-12T18:00:44-04:00September 12th, 2023|News|

MESA, ARIZONA - Today, the National Coalition Against Censorship's (NCAC) Arts and Culture Advocacy Program (ACAP) and the ACLU of Arizona released a joint statement responding to the City of Mesa's pledge to exercise greater control over artistic content in future exhibitions at Mesa Arts Center, which may lead to the prohibition of artwork that is deemed "controversial" or "critical" of government agencies. This commitment comes on the heels of the local and national [...]

Fort Worth ISD has temporarily removed over 100 books in violation of district policy

By |2023-09-12T15:15:49-04:00September 12th, 2023|News|

The National Coalition Against Censorship wrote to the board of Fort Worth Independent School District urging them to return any books that were temporarily removed from school libraries. The district identified 118 books with potentially sexual or violent content and has removed them to determine if they are "developmentally appropriate." This removal violates the principles established in the district’s policy. NCAC [...]

NCAC urges Somerset Public Schools to repeal a new school rule which violates students’ free speech rights

By |2023-09-12T13:59:48-04:00September 12th, 2023|News|

The National Coalition Against Censorship has written to the school committee of Somerset Public Schools concerning a new school rule, which violates students' free speech rights. The rule states that "any discussion of weapons (guns/knives/etc.) or making shooting gestures are not acceptable in school; this applies to real or toy weapons."  This rule goes far beyond the permissible limits [...]

NCAC Board President Emily Knox to testify before U.S. Senate Committee on the Judiciary on Book Ban Surge

By |2023-09-12T15:08:09-04:00September 11th, 2023|News|

NEW YORK - On September 12, 2023, at 10:00 a.m. Eastern Time, Emily Knox, the Board President of the National Coalition Against Censorship (NCAC), is set to testify before the U.S. Senate Committee on the Judiciary. The hearing, titled Book Bans: Examining How Censorship Limits Liberty and Literature, will address the alarming increase in book censorship. A live video [...]

Free speech community demands Daytona State College reschedule “Stranger Fruit” exhibition

By |2023-09-11T12:12:48-04:00September 11th, 2023|News|

As nonpartisan organizations dedicated to freedom of speech, thought, and inquiry, the National Coalition Against Censorship (NCAC), the American Civil Liberties Union of Florida (ACLU-FL), and the Foundation for Individual Rights and Expression (FIRE) are deeply disturbed by reports indicating that Daytona State College canceled an upcoming exhibition at the school's Southeast Museum of Photography because it refers to [...]

NCAC Launches Network of Local Groups to Fight Book Banning

By |2023-09-07T19:52:51-04:00September 7th, 2023|News|

New York, NY, September 7, 2023 – In response to the rapid expansion of organized politically partisan efforts to remove books from school and public library shelves, the National Coalition Against Censorship (NCAC) announced today the launch of the Kids' Right to Read Network (KRRN), a network of local groups that are fighting for the freedom to read for [...]

Free speech organizations call on Florida’s Department of Education to Issue Clear Guidance to Schools

By |2023-09-05T14:14:54-04:00September 5th, 2023|News|

(St. Petersburg, Florida) — A group of free expression and anti-censorship groups sent a letter to schools across Florida today, alerting them to legal filings by the state’s Attorney General that the “Don’t Say Gay” law doesn’t apply to school libraries. Although many Florida schools shuttered or restricted their libraries as the school year began, three separate  legal filings by Attorney [...]

Westminster, Maryland, school district removes 50 challenged books

By |2023-08-30T16:48:57-04:00August 30th, 2023|News|

In Westminster, Maryland, the superintendent of the Carroll County Public School District has temporarily removed over 50 challenged books from school libraries. This was done in compliance with district policy, which states that books can be removed from the school’s media collection pending adjudication of challenges. The National Coalition Against Censorship has written to the district administration to urge them [...]

NCAC opposes effort to restrict AP African American Studies in Arkansas

By |2023-08-21T14:00:02-04:00August 21st, 2023|News|

NEW YORK - The National Coalition Against Censorship (NCAC) is an alliance of national nonprofit groups dedicated to protecting freedom of expression, including the rights of K-12 students, teachers, and staff. NCAC released the following statement to oppose the Arkansas Department of Education's restrictions on Advanced Placement African American Studies. On Saturday, August 12, the Arkansas Department of Education [...]

NCAC urges Iowa Department of Education to issue Senate File 496 guidance to prevent confusion among school districts

By |2023-08-17T15:04:24-04:00August 17th, 2023|News|

The National Coalition Against Censorship has written to urge the Iowa Department of Education to issue guidance regarding Senate File 496, which restricts instruction on gender identity and sexual orientation, and removes school library books with sexual content. We are concerned that the vague law is creating confusion in Iowa school districts and will harm students because it encourages schools [...]

NCAC recommends book review policy changes to the Craven County Board of Education in North Carolina

By |2023-08-16T16:59:58-04:00August 16th, 2023|News|

Following news reports of 11 books being challenged in school libraries in the Craven County School District in North Carolina, the National Coalition Against Censorship (NCAC) has written to the school board to recommend changes in their procedures for addressing objections to books and other material. The district’s policy provides few safeguards against the danger that books might be [...]

NCAC to Celebrate Free Speech Defenders Juno Dawson, Coco Fusco, John Sargent, Madeline Scotti, Nadine Strossen

By |2023-08-21T16:59:30-04:00August 14th, 2023|News|

NEW YORK— Every year, the National Coalition Against Censorship (NCAC) honors leaders in the fight for free speech defenders during its benefit, LET ME SPEAK: a Celebration & Benefit of Free Speech & Its Defenders. This year’s event, presented by Macmillan Publishers, will highlight the contributions of Juno Dawson, Coco Fusco, John Sargent, Madeline Scotti, and Nadine Strossen. Critically acclaimed [...]

NCAC, ACLU of Arizona, demand the immediate rescheduling of exhibit that features Shepard Fairey’s “My Florist is a Dick”

By |2023-08-11T11:23:02-04:00August 10th, 2023|News|

NEW YORK - In a joint letter, the National Coalition Against Censorship’s (NCAC) Arts and Culture Advocacy Program (ACAP) and the ACLU of Arizona demand that officials in Mesa, Arizona, allow the opening of an art exhibit, Facing the Giant: Three Decades of Dissent, which includes a controversial work, My Florist is a Dick, by renowned artist Shepard Fairey. City officials [...]

Montgomery County, Texas, library system forced to label and restrict access to children’s books

By |2023-08-10T14:16:52-04:00August 10th, 2023|News|

The National Coalition Against Censorship (NCAC) sent a letter to the Montgomery County Commissioners Court in Conroe, Texas, expressing concern over the recent decision to label certain children's books as containing "explicit or questionable materials" and potentially relocate them to the library's adult section. Labeling and segregating books is ill-advised and conflicts with the stated goals of the Montgomery [...]

Don’t Turn School Libraries Into Detention Centers

By |2023-08-07T18:18:17-04:00August 2nd, 2023|News|

In a decision that is so shocking it sounds like satire, the new, state-appointed superintendent of the Houston Independent School District has announced plans to eliminate library staff from 28 schools and turn the libraries into detention centers for misbehaving students.  Following a takeover of underperforming Houston schools by the state of Texas, Superintendent Mike Miles described the repurposing of [...]

NCAC, ACLU NorCal encourage the City of San Mateo, California, to reinstate Public Art Exhibit Program | Updated

By |2023-08-08T10:02:42-04:00July 28th, 2023|News|

Update 8/7/2023: The City of San Mateo has responded that it will reinstate its public exhibition programs after it establishes a more detailed review policy for the artworks that are invited for display. The City also confirms Mr. Rios' exhibition was met with "concerns from members of the public and City staff that the display was not supportive of [...]

NCAC urges New Hanover County, North Carolina, school board to reject challenge against “Stamped” 

By |2023-07-26T16:08:47-04:00July 26th, 2023|News|

The National Coalition Against Censorship has written a letter to the school board of New Hanover County, North Carolina, urging them to reject a challenge to the book, Stamped: Racism, Anti-Racism, and You, authored by Jason Reynolds and Ibram X. Kendi. The board is set to review the complaint after it was already rejected twice by reconsideration committees. A parent [...]

Hernando County, Florida school board removes “Marvin Redpost: Is He a Girl?”

By |2023-07-25T19:33:29-04:00July 25th, 2023|News|

The National Coalition Against Censorship recently wrote a letter to the School Board of Hernando County School District in Brooksville, Florida, regarding their choice to remove Louis Sachar's "Marvin Redpost: Is He a Girl?" from elementary school libraries. This decision was made despite a review committee's recommendation to keep the book. The board's action appears to be based on [...]

Lee Rowland named National Coalition Against Censorship Executive Director

By |2023-08-08T11:42:45-04:00July 24th, 2023|News|

NEW YORK – The National Coalition Against Censorship (NCAC), an alliance of 59 national non-profit organizations, today announced that Lee Rowland, the policy director at the New York Civil Liberties Union, will become its new executive director. She replaces Christopher Finan, who is retiring.  Rowland will assume her new duties on September 13, 2023. “The NCAC board of directors [...]

Ambika Kumar, Tony Lyons, Sheryl Oring join NCAC Board

By |2023-07-17T10:45:16-04:00July 17th, 2023|News|

NEW YORK – The National Coalition Against Censorship (NCAC) continues to build expertise in the fields of law, publishing, and the arts by adding to its board of directors Ambika Kumar, Co-Chair of Media Law Practice at Davis Wright Tremaine, Tony Lyons, President and Publisher of Skyhorse Publishing, and Sheryl Oring, artist and Dean of the School of Art, [...]

Free speech community opposes Rockwell Falls Public Library Board’s attack on First Amendment rights in Lake Luzerne, New York

By |2023-07-14T12:14:11-04:00July 14th, 2023|News|

The National Coalition Against Censorship (NCAC) and members of the free speech community are alarmed by the Rockwell Falls Public Library Board's postponement and subsequent cancellation of an April 15 Drag Queen Story Hour, as well as recent suggestions from board members to remove any books that encompass LGBTQ+ themes or topics that purportedly relate to Critical Race Theory. [...]

ELLIS Alicante and Don’t Delete Art collaborate on the intersection between AI and Art

By |2023-07-10T18:54:55-04:00July 10th, 2023|News|

The collaboration will focus on online protection of artistic freedom  Alicante, 10 of July 2023– The ELLIS Alicante Foundation in Spain and the Don’t Delete Art initiative in the USA have joined forces to foster the responsible development of trustworthy, human-centric Artificial Intelligence (AI) in the context of art. Both institutions have pledged to give visibility to the negative [...]

NCAC responds to proposed Materials Review Policy updates in Sparta Township Schools, New Jersey

By |2023-07-06T12:49:19-04:00July 6th, 2023|News|

The National Coalition Against Censorship (NCAC) has contacted the Sparta Township Board of Education in New Jersey regarding proposed updates to the Sparta Township Library Resource Materials Policy and Regulation. The NCAC has expressed concern about the policy's complete prohibition of books with "lewd or vulgar content," which NCAC fears may prevent older students from accessing educational materials. To [...]

NCAC calls on Chevron to return public art installation | Updated

By |2023-09-28T11:18:14-04:00June 29th, 2023|News|

Updated 9/27/2023 – On June 12, 2023 Chevron acknowledged that it had destroyed the Fencelines community art project, which the company has characterized as an act of vandalism installed solely along their properties. On June 28, however, the City of Richmond affirmed the assertions of project organizers, that a majority of the work was installed with permission on city-owned [...]

Mansfield, Texas, School District proposed review policy remains problematic

By |2023-06-29T10:41:50-04:00June 29th, 2023|News|

The National Coalition Against Censorship (NCAC) has contacted the school board in Mansfield, Texas, regarding a proposed library materials policy. NCAC shared our concern that the policy provision banning the discussion of "gender fluidity" violates the principles set forth by the Supreme Court in Board of Education v. Pico. Furthermore, NCAC is also concerned with the policy's blanket ban on [...]

Santa Barbara, California, High School Removes Artwork After Religious Controversy

By |2023-06-20T11:22:37-04:00June 20th, 2023|Letters, News|

The National Coalition Against Censorship has written to the Santa Barbara Unified School District in California following news reports that Andres Serrano's artwork "Immersion (Piss Christ)" was removed from the curriculum of a course at Dos Pueblos High School. The district removed the image because some community members found it hurtful. NCAC urges the district to return the image [...]

Through Don’t Delete Art Manifesto, Free Speech Orgs Combat Social Media Policies that Suppress Artistic Expression

By |2023-06-15T10:28:23-04:00June 15th, 2023|News, Press Releases|

NEW YORK— Don’t Delete Art (DDA)—a collaborative initiative uniting advocacy groups and artists in the defense of artistic freedom online—held A Day of Action today in New York City and online. The actions are an extension of the group’s Manifesto campaign, which urges social media companies to integrate artistic perspectives into content moderation policies. The day's activities are documented [...]

Legal Filing Argues that Netflix Can’t be Held Liable for Depicting Suicide in its Series 13 Reasons Why Under the First Amendment

By |2024-04-09T14:43:51-04:00June 13th, 2023|Blog, News, Press Releases|

(NEW YORK) – PEN America, the Foundation for Individual Rights and Expression (FIRE), the National Coalition Against Censorship (NCAC), and the Student Press Law Center (SPLC) on Monday jointly filed an amicus brief to support the First Amendment rights of Netflix in a lawsuit over the series 13 Reasons Why, which depicted suicide. Netflix is being sued for damages following a 15-year-old girl’s [...]

Supporters Rally Around “It’s Perfectly Normal”

By |2023-06-12T19:54:50-04:00June 12th, 2023|Blog, News|

Children’s book author Robie H Harris’ and artist Michael Emberley’s million+ copy bestselling book, It’s Perfectly Normal, A Book About Changing Bodies, Growing Up, Sex, Gender, and Sexual Health, has been continuously challenged and/or banned since it was first published in 1994 and continues to be challenged even in recent days. In November of 1994, NCAC supported the book [...]

NCAC commends New Jersey school district for upholding student rights and suggests improvements in its book reconsideration policy

By |2023-06-09T13:01:30-04:00June 9th, 2023|Letters, News|

The National Coalition Against Censorship wrote to the Roxbury Public Schools Board of Education in Succasunna, New Jersey, to commend its rejection of a motion to remove nine challenged books before they could be reviewed by a reconsideration committee. Additionally, NCAC recommended two changes to board policy that would increase public transparency in future book challenges. Read NCAC's full [...]

Artists, Free Speech Orgs to Protest Suppression of Artistic Expression by Social Media Companies

By |2023-06-08T10:56:45-04:00June 8th, 2023|News, Press Releases|

New York, NY— Don’t Delete Art (DDA)—a collaborative initiative uniting advocacy groups and artists in the defense of artistic freedom online—will lead A Day of Action on June 15, 2023, in New York City and on social media. The actions are an extension of the DDA Manifesto campaign, which urges social media companies to update their content moderation policies [...]

Challenged graphic novels in Newtown, Connecticut public schools face restriction or removal | Updated

By |2023-06-06T17:21:49-04:00June 1st, 2023|News|

Update 6/6/2023 – The School Board of Newtown has unanimously voted to retain the books, and will “implement a process to support choices of individual parents and guardians to make individual choices for their children.” 6/1/2023 – The National Coalition Against Censorship has contacted the Newtown Public School District in Connecticut. NCAC highlighted concerns that arose from challenges to [...]

Analysis: Warhol Foundation v. Goldsmith

By |2023-06-01T16:08:08-04:00May 31st, 2023|News|

NCAC has obtained permission to share the following op-ed from artnet news, which was originally published on May 25, 2023. ARTNET NEWS OP-ED  Why the Supreme Court’s Decision in the Andy Warhol Copyright Case Shows the Dangers of a Sympathy Vote The former director of the ACLU’s Arts Censorship Project on the implications of 'Warhol Foundation v. Goldsmith.' By [...]

NCAC urges reinstatement of Elizabeth Gurley Flynn marker in Concord, New Hampshire | UPDATED

By |2023-08-31T17:33:57-04:00May 22nd, 2023|Letters, News|

UPDATE 8/31/23: A lawsuit has been filed against the State of New Hampshire over the removal of the Elizabeth Gurley Flynn historical marker. The lawsuit alleges that state officials violated the state’s Administrative Procedures Act, its historic markers program, and the plaintiffs’ rights to due process by interfering with their rights to petition for the approval and erection of [...]

Hanover County (VA) School District receives advice from NCAC on book challenge policy | Updated

By |2023-06-21T11:54:09-04:00May 19th, 2023|Letters, News|

Updated 6/21/2023 – The Hanover County School Board has adopted some of the changes recommended by NCAC including that books will not always be removed pending adjudication if a complainant alleges that they are "pervasively vulgar." However, the policy remains problematic as the district has removed nineteen books from school libraries. 5/18/2023 –The National Coalition Against Censorship (NCAC) recently [...]

Sarasota County Schools improperly removes Choke from school libraries

By |2023-05-12T16:22:32-04:00May 12th, 2023|Letters, News|

The National Coalition Against Censorship has written to the school board of Sarasota County Schools in Florida to protest a district administrator's removal of Chuck Palahniuk's Choke from high school libraries. This violates a board policy that bars administrators from removing books until the committee has reviewed them.Read NCAC's full letter to Sarasota County Schools here:Click here for a full-screen view: [...]

NCAC welcomes three new board members

By |2023-05-12T09:38:24-04:00May 12th, 2023|News, Press Releases|

NEW YORK - The National Coalition Against Censorship (NCAC) continues to build influence in the fields of entertainment, law, and publishing by adding to its board Amy Berkower, president of Writers House LLC, Jonathan Bloom, former Counsel at the law firm Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP, and stand-up comedian Judy Gold. The addition of new leadership comes at a [...]

School administration in Galesburg, MI, removes Gender Queer from libraries, violating review policy

By |2023-05-10T10:13:09-04:00May 10th, 2023|Letters, News|

According to news reports, Galesburg-Augusta Community Schools, in Galesburg, Michigan, has removed Maia Kobabe's Gender Queer from school libraries during the adjudication of the book challenge. The National Coalition Against Censorship objects to the violation of district policy, which states that material, "may not be withdrawn from use pending the committee's recommendation to the Superintendent." Read NCAC's full letter [...]

Middleborough, MA, student forbidden to wear shirt expressing political views

By |2023-05-09T00:51:13-04:00May 5th, 2023|News|

The National Coalition Against Censorship (NCAC) has written a letter to the Superintendent of Middleborough Public Schools in Middleborough,  Massachusetts, in response to a report that school officials in your district forbid a student from wearing a shirt that said: "there are only two genders." As the Supreme Court ruled in its landmark decision in Tinker v. Des Moines [...]

NCAC joins 132 national organizations to encourage Congress to oppose EARN IT Act

By |2023-05-05T10:26:05-04:00May 4th, 2023|News|

May 4, 2023: The EARN IT Act passed out of the Senate Judiciary Committee unanimously. Senate leadership must now decide whether to move the bill to the Senate floor. Several Senators, including Alex Padilla (D-CA), Cory Booker (D-NJ), Jon Ossoff (GA), Mike Lee (R-UT), and Peter Welch (D-VT), expressed concerns about the bill during the markup. Senator Padilla entered [...]