Nov 29, 2023 - Politics & Policy

73% of Jewish college students report antisemitism on campus this school year: ADL

A student wrapped in an Israel flag on Columbia University's campus.

A student with an Israeli flag watches as students participate in a protest in support of Palestine and for free speech at Columbia University campus on Nov. 14 in New York City. Photo: Spencer Platt/Getty Images

The vast majority of Jewish college students say they have seen or experienced antisemitism on their campus since the start of the school year, according to a new report by the Anti-Defamation League and Hillel International published Wednesday.

Driving the news: The Israel-Hamas war has been a flashpoint on college campuses, and as tensions have flared, antisemitic and anti-Muslim threats have been reported on campuses across the country.

By the numbers: Of those surveyed, 73% of Jewish college students say they have experienced or witnessed antisemitic incidents on their campuses since the start of the 2023-24 school year.

  • 44% of non-Jewish students said the same.
  • Prior to the Oct. 7 Hamas attack on Israel, roughly 67% of Jewish students said they felt "very" or "extremely" physically safe on campus. Since the attack, fewer than half (46%) said the same.
  • The portion of Jewish students who said they feel comfortable with others knowing they are Jewish has been nearly cut in half, from 64% prior to the start of the war to 39% after, the survey found.

Context: For the report, the ADL and Hillel conducted two rounds of surveys.

  • The first part was conducted from July 26 to Aug. 30 and surveyed 3,084 college students — 527 of whom were Jewish — from 689 campuses across the country.
  • The second part was conducted from Nov. 6-10 and surveyed 1,706 students. About 70% of respondents in the first survey participated in the second one.

What they're saying: "Since the Oct. 7 massacre in Israel, Jewish students feel increasingly threatened on campus – but college leaders are not doing enough to address this very real fear of antisemitism," said Jonathan Greenblatt, ADL's CEO, in a press release.

  • "No student should feel threatened or intimidated on campus. No student should feel the need to hide their religious or cultural identities," he said.

Of note: The Education Department opened investigations into six colleges over alleged incidents of antisemitism and Islamophobia earlier this month.

The big picture: Police across the U.S. have been on alert for an uptick in hate crimes against Jews and Muslims. Both the ADL and the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) have warned of a surge in antisemitic and anti-Muslim cases since Oct. 7.

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