A recent talk by Conservative MP Jacob Rees-Mogg, at King’s College London, was monitored by ‘safe space marshals’ to ensure that its content did not breach “safe space policy.”
Consequently, hilarity and bemusement has ensued among the student community, who have heavily and brutally criticised the University over its decision to employ these marshals at a rate of £11.89–13.32 an hour.
Jack Emsley, editor of the 1828 Journal, one of the largest Conservative print publications in UK Universities posted on Facebook shortly after the event: “Massive thanks to KCLSU for providing a fantastic safe space yesterday! I know that without the five Safe Space Marshalls working tirelessly, I definitely couldn’t have listened to Jacob Rees-Mogg without having my feelings seriously hurt! Definitely not a waste of paper, manpower or our money!”
It is said that the monitors are expected to put up posters indicating that the area is a “Safe Space” and take “appropriate action” if the Safe Space policy is breached.
KCL’s official ‘Safe Space Policy’ states that the University is “committed to providing an inclusive and supportive space for all students”, but its External Speaker Policy states that “every member of KCL shall be entitled to freedom of thought, conscience and religion, to hold opinions without interference or disadvantage, and to freedom of expression within the constraints of the law.”
When contacted for comments the King’s College Conservative Association stated: “We believe that the Safe Space [Policy] fundamentally infringes [upon] free speech. Having Marshals at an event monitoring what an elected representative had to say is anathema to the principle of free and open debate. No ideology is beyond criticism.”
In response the King’s Libertarian Society have started the ‘Abolish KCLSU’s Safe Space Policy‘ which is fully supported by the KCL Conservative Association.