For the third time in less than two years, a residence hall at the University of Minnesota has been vandalized with anti-Semitic messages. An email to students confirmed the incident took place on Nov. 28 in the 17th Ave. Residence Hall. The story was initially reported by The Minnesota Daily.
Students “who live in an identity-based Living Learning Community alerted Housing & Residential Life staff to the presence of racially biased vandalism that targeted a community-created poster,” the e-mail said. “The messaging was anti-Semitic in nature and also referenced white supremacist and Nazi sentiments.”
The email said that the Housing & Residential Life Departments does not have information on who was responsible.
In a statement, Minnesota Hillel Executive Director Benjie Kaplan said that the organization will continue to monitor the situation.
“We are deeply concerned by this incident and we urge anyone with information about the vandalism to come forward and report it to law enforcement,” he said. “As members of the Jewish and university community, we stand with others who have been victimized by hate on campus this year. We join our partners and friends in our dedication to creating a campus climate where all are valued and all feel safe.”
Steve Hunegs, Executive Director of the Jewish Community Relations Council of Minnesota and the Dakotas, said the University of Minnesota Police Department has been contacted.
“This incident concerns us deeply and we urge anyone with information about the hateful act to come forward and report it to UMPD,” he said. “We will continue to monitor the situation as we hope to learn more information about this disturbing incident.”
In three separate incidents in early 2017, neo-Nazi flyers were distributed around Dinkytown, a student was arrested for criminal damage to property with bias involving a swastika incident in the 17th Ave Residence Hall, and another student had a swastika and concentration camp drawn on the dry-erase board on his dorm room door. Earlier this year, ne0-Nazi flyers were again posted around campus.
According to the JCRC’s tracking, there have been 22 reported incidents of anti-Semitism in Minnesota in 2018. There were in 28 in 2017.