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The University of Central Florida must reinstate Charles Negy, the associate professor of psychology it terminated last year following his social media comments about “Black privilege,” an arbitrator found. The arbitrator’s decision centered on a dismissal for just cause provision in Negy’s union contract. Negy maintains he did “nothing wrong” and blames his firing on a social media “mob,” according to ClickOrlando.com. Negy also said that UCF faulted him for not reporting several years ago that two students complained a teaching assistant had made advances toward them: “If a student tells me someone is talking romantically to them, and they tell me they didn’t touch them, I’m not obligated to report that.”
The university said in a statement that it supports “faculty members’ right to academic freedom and the First Amendment rights of everyone in our campus community to freely express their opinions, and we encourage the expression of diverse points of view in a civil manner.” At the same time, it said, “UCF stands by the actions taken following a thorough investigation that found repeated misconduct in Professor Negy’s classroom, including imposing his views about religion, sex and race. However, we are obligated to follow the arbitrator’s ruling.”