New student antisemitism bill in Albany introduced
ALBANY, NY (Erie News Now)--IN RESPONSE THE SOME RECENT INCIDENTS OF ANTISEMITISM ON COLLEGE CAMPUSES IN THE STATE, SOME NEW YORK STATE LAWMAKERS HAVE INTRODUCED A BILL TO REQuire ALL ACCREDITED COLLEGES IN NEW YORK TO IMPLEMENT AN ANTISEMITISM TRAINING PROGRAM.
“This just seems like a logical step that might provide some fuller understanding of those students that go to these schools,” said Assembly Member Will Barclay (R-Assembly District 120).
BARCLAY SAid HE IS OPTIMISTIC THE NEWLY INTRODUCED LEGISLATION WILL CROSS THE FINISH LINE IN THE NEXT LEGISLATIVE SESSION SET TO START IN ALBANY IN JUST TWO MONTHS.
THE ASSEMBLY MEMBER ALSO SAid HE WOULD BE OPEN TO SIMILAR LEGISLATION ALSO EXTENDING THESE TYPES OF PROTECTIONS FOR MUSLIM STUDENTS. HE SAid HE SUSPECTS THERE IS ALREADY SENSITIVITY TRAINING FOR THIS DISCRIMINATION.
“I’m not positive I don’t know if it’s for every higher ed institution out there, but I certainly imagine most of them have some sort of sensitivity training for that already,” said Barclay.
SOME ADVOCATES SAid THEY ARE CONCERNED ABOUT THIS LEGISLATION POSSIBLY USING THE DEFINITION OF ANTISEMITISM TO LIMIT FREE SPEECH FOR STUDENTS CRITiciZING ISRAEL’S ACTIONS IN THE ONGOING ARMED CONFLICT OVERSEES.
“If the legislation relies on any definition of antisemitism that could be used to chill campuses or any other institutions or students from allowing free speech that supports the human rights of Palestinians and or critiques Israeli state actions or policies,” said Sumayyah Waheed, senior policy counsel at Muslim Advocates.
Waheed said IT’S IMPORTANT FOR CAMPUSES TO BE AWARE OF THE THREATS HAPPENING TO STUDENTS SPEAKING out about PALESTINIAN HUMAN RIGHTS.
Muslim Advocates recently sent an open letter, in coalition with other organizations, to colleges and universities nationwide urging them to protect students speaking out on Palestine.