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South Dakota, North Carolina implement bills defining antisemitism

North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper: “Defining antisemitism is important to stopping it, and this new law helps do that as incidents are on the rise.”

North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper speaks as Electric carmaker Vinfast breaks ground in its $4b manufacturing plant, located within the Triangle Innovation Point in Chatham County, N.C., on July 28, 2023. Photo by Nick Ut/Getty Images.
North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper speaks as Electric carmaker Vinfast breaks ground in its $4b manufacturing plant, located within the Triangle Innovation Point in Chatham County, N.C., on July 28, 2023. Photo by Nick Ut/Getty Images.

Measures utilizing the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s (IHRA) working definition of antisemitism to guide government workers in assessing Jew-hate have become law in North Carolina and South Dakota.

“I am very proud of this historic legislation that will keep our Jewish people secure,” South Dakota’s Gov. Kristi Noem said on Monday when HB 1076 went into effect. The bill mandates the use of the IHRA definition when the state government investigates potential acts of discrimination.

“Since I signed this bill, antisemitic hatred has only grown worse across the United States, but not in South Dakota. I hope states across the country will follow South Dakota’s leadership and take steps to combat this hatred,” Noem said. 

She had signed the bill in a signing ceremony in March.

In North Carolina on Monday, Gov. Roy Cooper signed the Shalom Act, which also adopts the IHRA definition.

“Defining antisemitism is important to stopping it, and this new law helps do that as antisemitic incidents are on the rise,” North Carolina’s Gov. Roy Cooper said. “While we protect the right to free speech, this legislation helps to make our state a more welcoming, inclusive and safe place for everyone.”

South Dakota IHRA
South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem (seated) signs a bill codifying the IHRA working definition of antisemitism into state law at the state capitol in Pierre on March 6, 2024. Credit: Courtesy of South Dakota Office of the Governor.
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