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Lawfare Project launches initiative to protect campus Jewish communities

“Jewish and Israeli students, student groups and faculty are regularly threatened, marginalized and harassed. In far too many instances, school administrators turn a blind eye to this hostile environment or contribute to it by failing to enforce school policies,” says Lawfare Project executive director Brooke Goldstein.

The San Francisco State University campus. Credit: Wikimedia Commons.
The San Francisco State University campus. Credit: Wikimedia Commons.

The Lawfare Project, a nonprofit human and civil-rights litigation and advocacy group, announced a new initiative on Thursday to protect the civil rights of the Jewish and pro-Israel community on college campuses nationwide.

“Anti-Semitism and the demonization of Israel have become an all-too-common part of today’s campus environment,” the organization’s executive director, Brooke Goldstein, said in a statement about the newly launched Campus Civil Rights Project. “Jewish and Israeli students, student groups and faculty are regularly threatened, marginalized and harassed. In far too many instances, school administrators turn a blind eye to this hostile environment or contribute to it by failing to enforce school policies.”

The Lawfare Project will assist Jewish students, professors and campus groups whose “civil liberties have been violated” by, including but not limited to, providing “guidance to affected parties on how to interact with school administrators and help determine steps for remedying a hostile environment both inside or outside of the classroom;” bringing “anti-Semitic and anti-Israel harassment and threats to the attention of school administrators;” and “when the facts and circumstances warrant, take legal action to ensure that schools live up to their legal obligations to protect Jewish students from anti-Semitic harassment, intimidation and discrimination.”

The group was behind a federal lawsuit last year against San Francisco State University, alleging it aided and abetted anti-Semitic and anti-Israel vitriol on its campus. Before it was expected to be dismissed, U.S. District Judge William Orrick gave the Lawfare Project the chance to amend and refile the suit, which the organization did on March 29. The case is ongoing.

The Lawfare Project also filed a case in state court, scheduled to be heard in March 2019.

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