New Voices U.S.

New Jersey

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New Voices of New Jersey is a movement to guarantee student journalists in the state the freedom to report without fear of consequence. Right now, there is no added protection against administrative censorship for high school or college journalists and their advisers, leaving them vulnerable to censorship for simply reporting the truth.

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“If your rights are being infringed upon, you have to fight for them because no one else will. If sunlight is the best disinfectant, then you ought to be the sunlight. In other words, be a champion of your own cause, by making sure that your voice is heard.”

—Adelina Colaku, former editor-in-chief of a censored New Jersey high school newspaper

Assembly Bill 4028 was filed on June 30, 2016, by Assemblywoman Gail Phoebus, R-Sussex, and Assemblyman Troy Singleton, D-Burlington. The bill protects high school and college journalists against censorship as well as forbidding retaliatory personnel actions against faculty advisers. An identical companion bill, Senate Bill 2506, was filed in the Senate on Aug. 1, 2016, by Sens. Diane Allen, Nia Gill and Jennifer Beck. A student group, GSSPA Students, is taking the lead on marshaling student support behind reform legislation.

New Jersey