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Dear <<First Name>>,

Below is a note I just sent to our students. We regret that we had to respond to ugly antisemitism and intolerance on campus so early in the academic year.

We value our partnership with SF State’s leadership and are continuing our essential campus climate work to confront antisemitism, antisemitic forms of anti-Zionism, and anti-normalization.  Incidents like this are horrifying and illustrate the invaluable role SF Hillel plays for our students, our universities, and our Jewish community. 

You might be wondering how you can help our students right now. Our answer is always the same: work with us throughout the year to ensure we have a vibrant Hillel in San Francisco.
Dear SF Hillel Community at SF State,

Yesterday evening, our campus received an email from the university offering support following the discovery of disturbing antisemitic, racist, and homophobic messages in a residence hall this weekend. We want you to know SF Hillel was immediately made aware of the incident and has been working since Sunday to support affected students in communication with the university. 

We understand that the individual responsible for the hateful vandalism has been identified and is going through university disciplinary proceedings. We are grateful for the quick reporting of this craven act and the university’s swift investigation and condemnation. 
But upsetting events like this remind us that, sadly, bigotry and ignorance lurk everywhere. Even institutions known for their diversity and social justice values are not immune. It can lead us to question our safety and belonging and make us fearful of publicly celebrating or sharing our identities. As Vice President Moore noted, the location of this vandalism in a dorm is particularly upsetting, as we strive to ensure SF State is a home away from home for all our students.

SF Hillel serves as our students’ ambassadors and continually advocates for the Jewish student experience on our campus. Over the past two years, SF State leadership, faculty, staff, and students joined SF Hillel and our partners to specifically address our ongoing campus climate challenges. Our work to educate and prepare our administration to identify and respond to antisemitism is critical, especially in moments like this. 

Please remember SF Hillel is here for you. In addition to the resources listed by the university, SF Hillel’s professionals are available to meet and connect you to care and community. Feel free to reach out to Noah, Danielle, and Sarah

If you’re suddenly realizing you might struggle to recognize or know what to do if you witnessed antisemitism or a bias incident, know we will provide learning opportunities throughout the year. You are not alone and don’t deserve to feel afraid on your campus. 

Last Friday, I stood in the back of SF Hillel and watched our packed backyard of students welcome Shabbat together. Your voices, raised in song and prayer, were both comforting and inspiring. No person, no symbol, can stifle our Jewish pride.
Rachel Nilson Ralston
With special thanks to our long-standing community partners for their ongoing support:
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