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How Students Can Fight Antisemitic Abuses on Campus
You Can File Simple Complaint With DoEd With Copies to Legislators
At a time when more half of all Jewish students feel scared to be on U.S. college campuses, and more than one in three Jewish students say they have felt the need to hide their Jewish identity on campus since the October 7 Hamas attack on Israel, colleges must be forced to do more than issue vague statements.
Here's what students and concerned members of the faculty can and should do, Prof Banzhaf suggests.
The Department of Education [DoEd] has warned colleges and universities that it will investigate complaints of possible violations of Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 if the institution fails to address prohibited discrimination against students.
The letter is the second reminder in the last six months that a university will be investigated for violations of the Civil Rights Act if it fails to address prohibited discrimination against students.
Such DoEd investigations, ordinarily triggered by the filing of a complaint, create major problems for any university - including time spent, resources consumed, attorney fees, and embarrassment - and can even lead to a loss of federal funding.
There are currently over 50 such Open Title VI Shared Ancestry Investigations.
Banzhaf therefore suggests that students and faculty file a complaint regarding any possible violations with the Department by following its very simple procedures (https://www2.ed.gov/
He notes that not only victims, but others who witness or even just become aware of an incident can file, so students who prefer to remain anonymous can seek the assistance of a sympathetic professor to file a formal complaint for them.
Banzhaf's own experience shows that universities against whom formal complaints are filed, or even if there is only a threat to file a complaint, often find this more than sufficient motivation to begin enforcing rules, protecting innocent students, and more strictly simply doing what the law requires.
Copies of such Title VI complaints should also be sent to the president of the university by Certified Mail, Receipt Requested.
It may also be useful for copies of the complaints to be shared with the relevant member of the U.S. House and both U.S. Senators, as well as with state legislators.