On Wednesday, North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory signed into law a bill that will allow religious and political student groups at the state’s public colleges and universities to limit their leadership to students who are committed to the group’s mission or faith.
The new law (PDF), sponsored by Senator Dan Soucek, provides:
(a) No constituent institution that grants recognition to any student organization shall deny recognition to a student organization or deny to a student organization access to programs, funding, facilities, or other privileges associated with official recognition otherwise available to another student organization, on the basis of the organization’s exercise of its rights pursuant to subsection (b) of this section.
(b) To the extent allowed by State and federal law, a religious or political student organization may, in conformity with the organization’s established written doctrines expressing the organization’s faith or mission, (i) determine that only persons professing the faith or mission of the group, and comporting themselves in conformity with, are qualified to serve as leaders of that organization, (ii) order its internal affairs according to the established written doctrines, and (iii) resolve the organization’s disputes according to the established written doctrines.
Another section applies the same rules to the state’s community colleges.