Throughout Spring 2024, the University of Georgia’s First Amendment Clinic provided trainings and presentations on a wide range of First Amendment issues to audiences including student journalists, educators, public officials, law enforcement, and members of the judiciary.

Clinic Fellows Ashley Fox and Allyson Veile (pictured above) presented on the First Amendment right to record, and best practices for responding to First Amendment auditors, at the Georgia Municipal Association’s Small Cities Conference.

Samaria Henry (2L) and Clinic attorney Samantha Hamilton spoke with educators at the Athens Anti Discrimination Movement about the First Amendment implications of book bans and curriculum restrictions.

Jenny Danker (3L) & Madi Blair (3L) delivered a “know your rights” training to high school journalists at the Georgia Scholastic Press Association’s spring conference and awards day.

Clinic fellow Ashley Fox presented to city employees during Savannah’s March 2024 Freedom of Information Day Celebration on best practices for responding to Georgia Open Records Act requests.

Clinic attorney Samantha Hamilton provided a primer to judges from across the state on analyzing cases under Georgia’s Anti-SLAPP (Strategic Litigation Against Public Participation) statute.

A study group of three students, sitting on a round table and looking over a notebook.

The Issue

Defamation Defense

Defamation is a false statement of fact that harms the reputation of a person, business, or organization. Journalists, news organizations, and even ordinary people can be sued for defamation, which is a common tactic to chill or silence legitimate speech and criticism. Read more about our defamation defense work here.

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The Issue

Right to Record

The First Amendment generally protects the right to gather information about what public officials do on public property, which includes the right to record matters of public interest. Although this right is clearly established, some government officials try to prevent or retaliate against those who record them. Read more about our advocacy for the right…

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High School Students walking

The Issue

Student First Amendment Rights

The First Amendment protects students and student journalists from censorship and retaliation in public schools and universities. As the Supreme Court has explained, students do not “shed their constitutional right to freedom of speech at the schoolhouse gate.” Read more about our work on behalf of students and student journalists here.

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Hands over a laptop keyboard, with illustrations of records reflected on the screen.

The Issue

Government Transparency

Georgia’s legislature finds that transparent government is essential to a free, open, and democratic society. The state’s “sunshine laws” guarantee access to the public records and public meetings of local and state government agencies. The First Amendment and Georgia’s uniform superior court rules also protect the public’s right to observe court proceedings and review court…

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