SAN MARCOS, Calif. (AP) — The California State University system and Cal State San Marcos agreed to pay $240,000 to settle a lawsuit challenging their refusal to use student fees to fund a pro-life speaker on campus, according to a newspaper report Wednesday.
University officials also agreed to change their policy to make sure that future funding decisions are “viewpoint neutral” and do not discriminate against particular causes, the San Diego Union-Tribune reported.
Cal State San Marcos student Nathan Apodaca sued the school and its Associated Students Inc. auxiliary in 2017 after he and his anti-abortion group Students for Life were denied a $500 grant to host Mike Adams, a well-known pro-life speaker.
As part of the settlement, all 23 Cal State campuses will be alerted that applicable student association funds for speech events “may not be based on the approval or disapproval of an organization’s or an association’s viewpoint."
Neither the Chancellor’s Office or Cal State San Marcos responded to requests from the newspaper for comment about the settlement.
The agreement, which assigns no blame to either party in the litigation, also calls for CSU to pay $3,000 in damages to the Students for Life chapter at CSU San Marcos. Associated Students agreed to pay $300 to Apodaca to cover past fees paid by the student.