(Toronto, ON – February 16, 2022) – Today the University of Toronto Student Union (UTSU) held a Special General Meeting and voted in support of a motion calling on “the UTSU (to) wholly divest funds & further on forbid investment to firms complicit in the occupation of Palestinian Territory” (sic).
More than 240 Jewish students and their supporters voted against the motion. We are deeply disappointed by the adoption of this motion and call on the UTSU to reverse this shameful decision.
Naena Drazman, East Coast Assistant Campus Coordinator for StandWithUs Canada and the President of Students Supporting Israel at the University of Toronto said:
“While I am outraged at the passing of this motion, I am extremely proud of the students who rallied together to speak against the motion. The voices of Jewish students at UofT were heard loudly and proudly today. Discriminatory motions of this nature are unacceptable. Boycotting the Jewish state does nothing to foster peace between Israeli and Palestinians and ultimately denies Jews rights to self-determination. ”
Evan Kanter, Hillel Student Leader, said:
“I am disappointed that once again, the UTSU has decided to stoke the flames of antisemitism, rather than working to improve the student experience. It saddens me that prospective students considering UofT will have to wonder ‘Am I welcome here as a Jew? Will I have a student union who cares to represent me, though I’m Jewish?’
Dozens and dozens of Jewish students attended the meeting today to voice opposition against this antisemitic motion. Today’s events highlight the inadequacy of the University’s choice not to adopt the IHRA definition of antisemitism. It’s hard to fight antisemitism if we have to keep convincing people how it’s defined.”
StandWithUs Canada, Hillel UofT and SSI will continue to work together to support Jewish students counter antisemitism at the University of Toronto.