May 21, 2024


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US Department of Education opens investigation into USC after a student accused the school of allowing antisemitism on campus


“USC students demanded that Ms. Ritch be impeached and/or resign from the [undergraduate student government] simply because of her perceived ethnic Jewish identity as a ‘Zionist,'” the center’s complaint examine. “College students falsely equated Ms. Ritch’s assist for Israel, the Jewish homeland, with hostility toward Palestinians and therefore justified her removal from USG.”

The heart accuses USC of violating Title VI — which prohibits discrimination centered on race, color or countrywide origin — declaring the school “failed to consider prompt and efficient actions to end the harassment and do away with the hostile setting or avert it from recurring.”

The Brandeis Center stated harassment was extreme and persistent and USC was aware of it but failed to intervene.

The DOE’s Office for Civil Rights opened an investigation in June 2022 concerning discrimination involving faith.

USC reported in a statement the college “is proud of its tradition of inclusivity for all pupils, including customers of our Jewish community.”

The college also stated it has “produced a range of commitments to beat antisemitism and anti-Jewish hatred” in excess of the past two several years.

“We are continuing to acquire these actions to additional establish on the welcoming surroundings we have created for our Jewish local community. We look forward to addressing any issues or thoughts by the U.S. Division of Instruction pertaining to this matter,” the school’s assertion examine.

USC students labeled Ritch a Zionist, criticism suggests

The Brandeis Centre claims Ritch’s harassment started for the duration of her campaign.

“Her posters had been regularly vandalized and the campaign posters of other Jewish pupils operating for university student senate were torn down,” the center’s launch explained. “Ritch was also bullied and harassed consistently on social media, and the ongoing and persistent harassment continued right after she was elected.”

USC students also launched a social media marketing campaign demanding Ritch’s impeachment and/or resignation, the middle stated, since of “her perceived ethnic Jewish identity as a ‘Zionist.'”

Zionism is the motion and assistance of “the self-resolve and statehood for the Jewish folks in their ancestral homeland, the land of Israel,” according to the Anti-Defamation League.
Ritch wrote an op-ed for Newsweek where by she stated she openly identified as a Jew “who supports Israel’s appropriate to exist as a Jewish state.”
'It is really dizzying for our community': Growing anti-Semitism forcing Jewish Americans to be more vigilant

Simply because of these beliefs, learners accused Ritch of not remaining suited plenty of to be their vice president, she wrote.

Ritch and other Jewish businesses urged USC to choose action, the centre explained. Ritch also satisfied with the USC president and vice president of student affairs. Having said that, no action was taken, the centre said.

The heart finished up sending a letter to the university to choose motion and “urging the administration to just take prompt measures to protect Ritch from the discriminatory harassment that sought to deny her an equal academic possibility to serve in USG only on the basis of her Jewish ethnic identification.”

The university did suspend Ritch’s impeachment listening to, but the heart stated the school failed to publicly condemn the antisemitic harassment.

The center explained USC did not make a community assertion condemning the harassment right until following Ritch resigned in August 2020.

CNN’s Chris Boyette contributed to this report.


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