RICHMOND, Va. – “Sadly, antisemitic discrimination in American higher education is not merely a shameful legacy. It is happening today. Right now,” said Virginia Attorney General Jason Miyares.

Miyares addressed a letter to the Virginia Council of Presidents urging them to actively fight against Jewish hate on campuses.

In the letter, Miyares referenced a report from the Anti-Defamation League (ADL). The report said in the 2021-2022 school year more than 350 anti-Israel incidents took place on college and university campuses nationwide.

Miyares said some U.S. college students felt forced to conceal their identities to protect themselves from discrimination and violence.

“I am proud of our system of public and private higher education in the Commonwealth, but
we must ensure that our institutions serve all students. Additionally, our institutions should remain centers of thought leadership and diversity, teaching the next generation how to think and not what to think, ” Miyares said.

He wants students of all backgrounds to feel comfortable and welcomed while pursuing degrees.

“Unlawful religious discrimination of any kind at our institutions of higher education, whether
public or private, will not be tolerated by my Office. Please do all you can to ensure that your
Virginia administrations and student organizations do not engage in antisemitic conduct or religious discrimination,” Miyares said.

A report from the Virginia Commission to Combat Antisemitism shows in 2022 the state received about 350 antisemitic reports.

The report also said about 2 in 3 hate crimes committed in the U.S. are against Jewish people.

On Sunday evening, U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland attended the National Menorah Lighting to commemorate the beginning of Hanukkah. Garland spoke about Jewish hate crimes.

“Together we must stand up against the disturbing rise in antisemitism, and together we must stand up against bigotry in any of its forms. Our democracy depends on it,” he said.

Anyone who has witnessed or experience antisemitic acts can report it to ADL.