U.C. Berkeley senate passes bill condemning anti-Semitism

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U.C. Berkeley’s student senate unanimously passed a bill condemning anti-Semitism and urging the Associated Students of the University of California to do more to fight it on campus and keep Jewish students safe.

At its Feb. 25 meeting, the ASUC Senate voted 20-0 to approve the bill, which was introduced by ASUC senator Ori Herschmann and co-sponsored by members of such campus groups as Tikvah, the Jewish fraternity AEPi and Bears for Israel.

The ASUC bill cites recent “hateful incidents” at U.C. campuses, such as anti-Semitic graffiti at Jewish sites, including swastikas spray-painted at the U.C. Davis Jewish fraternity in January. The bill further calls for a meeting of university administrators, students and Jewish community leaders to discuss anti-Semitism on campus.

Ori Herschmann, U.C. Berkeley student senate

“It’s extremely important for the ASUC and student governments to actively fight anti-Semitism and make sure all Jewish students feel safe on campus,” Herschmann said in a statement. “Today, we have taken a big step in making sure the Jewish people of all U.C. campuses, not just Berkeley, can live safely without fear of anti-Semitism throughout their time at college.”

Bears for Israel president Becca Berman added, “Because discriminatory comments against Jews go almost unnoticed, because spray-painted swastikas aren’t properly addressed, and because Jewish students need to feel safe and secure on this campus and in the U.C. system as a whole, we need this bill.”

Read the full text of the bill online.

The vote comes on the heels of a spate of successes for the boycott, divestment and sanctions movement on local campuses. Divestment bills were passed recently at Stanford University and U.C. Davis, though the Davis vote was reversed in a suit brought before the student senate court. — j. staff