SAR Europe submitted a response to the Council of Europe public consultation on a draft Committee of Ministers Recommendation on Countering Strategic Lawsuits against Public Participation (SLAPPs).
SLAPPs suppress academic freedom, and censure and silence researcher and scholars.
Threats to academic freedom manifest through a wide range of conduct, from violent or coercive attacks on scholars, to administrative actions or legal coercion. Legal coercion can take many forms, including SLAPPs which can be utilised to target academic conduct or expression, to intimidate or harass members of the academic community into silence. If scholars are to be encouraged and indeed expected to speak out in public fora, then they must be afforded real protection from vexatious, abusive and meritless legal suits.
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