The report identified 232 public and private American colleges and universities that had bias response teams on their campuses in 2016, affecting around 2.8 million students.
BRTs encourage students to formally report on other students and faculty members whenever they perceive that someone’s speech is “biased,” which threatens free speech.
Most universities receive a variety of complaints from students, including students who encounter “offensive” yet legally protected speech, but rather than responding to these incidents fairly if there’s an actual threat, campuses with Bias Response Teams conduct an investigation and if the “respondent” is found “guilty”, invite them for a “hearing”.
Examples of Bias Response Teams exercising their power include a student humor publication at the University of California, San Diego (UCSD) that lost its funding after making fun of “safe spaces” on campus. They got their funding pulled after people filed bias incident reports, one openly calling the university to “stop funding”.