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The U.S. Department of Education begins a USC investigation after students accuse the school of allowing anti-Semitism on campus

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CNN
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According to a news release on Tuesday, the US Department of Education began investigating the University of Southern California after students accused the university of exacerbating anti-semismism on campus. Jewish advocacy agency.

According to the center, the investigation stems from a complaint filed by the Louis D. Brandis Human Rights Center on behalf of Roserich, who was elected Vice President of the Students’ Union in February 2020.

“USC students demanded that Mr. Rich be impeached or resigned. [undergraduate student government] Because of the Jewish ethnic identity she recognized as a “Zionist,” the Center’s complaint read. “Students mistakenly equated Mr. Rich’s support for her Jewish hometown of Israel with her hostility towards the Palestinians, thereby justifying her departure from the USG.”

The center accused the USC of violating Title VI, which bans discrimination based on race, color, and country of origin, and the school “ends harassment and eliminates hostile environments. We have not been able to take prompt and effective measures to prevent a recurrence. ”

The Brandeis Center said the harassment was serious and persistent and the USC was aware of it but did not intervene.

The DOE Civil Rights Agency began investigating discrimination, including religion, in June 2022.

“For all students, including members of our Jewish community, the school is proud of its culture of inclusiveness,” the USC said in a statement.

The university also said over the past two years that it “has made many commitments to combat anti-Semitism and anti-Semitist hatred.”

“We continue to take these steps to further build the cozy environment we have created for the Jewish community. We look forward to addressing concerns and questions from the U.S. Department of Education on this issue. “I read the school statement.

The Brandeis Center says Ritch’s harassment began during the campaign.

“Her posters were repeatedly destroyed, and campaign posters for other Jewish students running for the Students’ Union were demolished,” the center said. “Lich has been bullied and harassed on social media, and has continued to be harassed continuously and persistently since she was elected.”

USC students also launched a social media campaign demanding rich impeachment and / or resignation for “the Jewish ethnic identity she recognized as a’Zionist’,” the center said.

Zionism, according to the Anti-Defamation League, is the movement and support of “Jewish self-determination and nation in the land of Israel, the home of their ancestors.”

Lich wrote a Newsweek editorial, stating that he publicly identified him as a Jew who “supported Israel’s right to exist as a Jewish state.”

Because of these beliefs, students accused Lich of not being adequate enough to become their vice president, she wrote.

Rich and other Jewish organizations urged the USC to take action, the Center said. Rich also met with the USC President and Vice President of Student Affairs. However, no action was taken, the center said.

The center eventually sent a letter to the university, taking action and swiftly protecting Rich from discriminatory harassment trying to deny equal educational opportunities to serve at the USG based solely on the Jewish people. I asked the government to take action. Identity. ”

The university suspended Lich’s impeachment hearing, but the center said the school did not publicly condemn anti-Semitic harassment.

The center said the USC did not issue an official statement condemning the harassment until Lich resigned in August 2020.

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