On Wednesday, Congresswoman Kathy Manning (D-6th) introduced a legislation that would allow students to file reports with the Department of Education (DOE) if they experience antisemitism in any form on campus due to their heritage or religion. Manning is co-sponsoring the bill with Rep. Lor Chavez-Deremer (R-OR). In January, a Senate companion bill, SB 3580, was introduced by Senators Bill Cassidy (R-LA) and John Fetterman (D-PA).

The legislation comes in the wake of the October 7th attacks by Hamas against Israel, and the ensuing war against Hamas in Gaza. Following the events, antisemitism has broken out on college campuses across the nation, including incidents at the University of North Carolina.  

“All students deserve to learn and live on college campuses without fear of discrimination, harassment, or intimidation,” said Manning in a press release. “Unfortunately, right now, Jewish students across the country are facing a drastic rise in antisemitism, leaving them feeling threatened, ostracized, and unwelcome on campuses. I’m leading the bipartisan Protecting Students on Campus Act to help protect students from discrimination and ensure that colleges and universities do more to combat antisemitism and hate or be held accountable.”

A recent study by ADL and Hillel International reported that 73% of Jewish college students and 43.9% of non-Jewish students have experienced or witnessed antisemitism since the beginning of the 2023-24 school year. A survey conducted in 2021 found that 32% of Jewish students experienced antisemitism directed at them, and 31% witnessed antisemitism on campus directed at others. Post-October 7th, non-Jewish students assumed to be Jewish have increased from 7.2% to 12.7%. Of these, 29.5% reported being the targets of offensive antisemitic remarks. 

“Since October 7th, students who have felt comfortable with others knowing they’re Jewish decreased significantly. 63.7% of Jewish students pre-October 7th felt ‘very’ or ‘extremely’ comfortable, but now only 38.6% feel the same,” according to the study

This is not the first time that Rep. Manning has spoken out about growing antisemitism on college campuses. 

“It was a growing problem before the October 7th Hamas terrorist attack.” said Manning in remarks on the House floor on December 14, 2023. “And sadly, after that savage attack, antisemitism skyrocketed – particularly on college campuses. What we have seen happening on college campuses is outrageous. Too many college and university leaders have totally failed in their moral responsibility to unequivocally condemn antisemitism. They have failed to keep Jewish students and faculty members safe. That is shameful.”

Manning chose not run for re-election this cycle and, with no Democrat on the ballot in North Carolina’s Sixth Congressional District, she will be replaced by Republican nominee Addison McDowell. 

In addition to antisemitism running rampant across college campuses, North Carolina families have been directly impacted by the events of October 7th. When Hamas attacked Israel, taking more than 130 hostages, North Carolinians were among them. At least 33 hostages have died while being held captive. 

One of the hostages still being held is Keith Samuel Siegel, 64, an occupational therapist from Chapel Hill, North Carolina. Senators Budd and Tillis hosted Siegel’s family during this year’s State of the Union address. 

Additionally, as reportedby CJ, Senators Budd and Tillis have joined a bipartisan coalition of senators who are urging leaders in Qatar, where top Hamas leaders are residing, to step up pressure on Hamas to release the remaining 133 hostages, including eight Americans.