State Representatives Jack Jordan (R-Bremen) and Jake Teshka (R-North Liberty) recently supported legislation to define antisemitism for Indiana’s public education institutions.

According to the Anti-Defamation League, reports of antisemitic events have increased by nearly 360% since the Israel-Hamas war began in October 2023.

“It’s sad that due to recent events we are seeing more Jewish students witnessing and experiencing harassment,” said Jordan, who co-authored the bill. “This treatment is simply unacceptable. Our legislation will keep antisemitism out of K-12 and college classroom instructional and resource materials. It’s a great way for Indiana to step up the Jewish community.”

Teshka said this legislation would define antisemitism as religious discrimination in state law to ensure that K-12 schools and universities do not include the concept in teaching materials or resources. More specifically, antisemitism would be defined as “a certain perception of Jews, which may be expressed as hatred toward Jews. Rhetorical and physical manifestations of antisemitism are directed toward Jewish or non-Jewish individuals and or their property, toward Jewish community institutions and religious facilities.” Teshka said this definition is already adopted by the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance, the U.S. Department of State and the U.S. Department of Education.

“This bill lays out the definition of antisemitism to make sure it doesn’t end up in classrooms,” Teshka said. “It’s disgusting and heartbreaking that Jewish students are experiencing this treatment across our country. In Indiana, we want to make sure our Jewish students feel welcome and safe.”

The proposal is the same legislation from the 2023 legislative session, which passed unanimously out of the House, but did not receive a hearing in the Indiana Senate.

House Bill 1002 now heads to the Senate for further consideration.

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