Rokita warns college officials: Hateful antisemitic acts against Jewish students will not be tolerated on campus


Following months of campus protests sometimes featuring troubling anti-Jewish propaganda, Attorney General Todd Rokita warned college officials they are duty-bound to enforce Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 by combating all forms of antisemitism on their campuses — or risk losing their federal funding.

“My team and I are deeply committed to ending antisemitism in all forms,” Attorney General Rokita wrote in a letter to college officials. “Some Indiana colleges and universities boast large populations of Jewish students. If these students face antisemitism on campus without corrective measures, they may bring an action under Title VI against your university by alleging a hostile environment or retaliation.”

Violent and disruptive protests have rocked campuses coast to coast following last year’s deadly attack on Israel by the terrorist group Hamas. Although the 2023-24 academic year is wrapping up, the potential persists for continued campus protests — and continued antisemitic agitation.

Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits discrimination based on “race, color, and national origin” in programs and activities that receive federal financial assistance. Indiana state-run higher educational institutions receive federal funding and are therefore subject to Title VI.

Attorney General Rokita also reminded college officials they must ensure that student groups do not materially support foreign terrorist organizations. House Enrolled Act 1179, which takes effect July 1, 2024, requires state educational institutions to adopt policies to prohibit providing funds or other resources to foreign terrorist organizations or state sponsors of terror.

Those who would incite violence or commit criminal acts may not hide behind the First Amendment to avoid culpability, Attorney General Rokita added.

“Protecting our Jewish students requires accountability on the university’s part. I strongly encourage them to enforce university codes of conduct and the law when necessary to put an end to antisemitism and the promotion of terrorism on your campuses,” Attorney General Rokita said. “That way we can ensure that all students, including our Jewish brothers and sisters, are safe and have an equal access to education.”

Attached is the letter sent to Indiana’s public higher educational institutions.

A headshot of Attorney General Rokita is available online.