Jewish-Israeli students find swastika in residence hall

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The University of Indianapolis is beginning an investigation after a swastika was found on the wall in Robert’s Hall.

Two Jewish-Israeli students found the swastika when moving into their dorm room, according to the Jewish Community Relations Council.

Now, the university is beginning an in-depth investigation to find out what happened and who did it, said UIndy President Robert Manuel. They will be reviewing the thousands of people who may have had access to the residence hall over the summer, according to an email Manuel sent this morning. 

“Although we do not yet know the source of this anti-Semitic act, we should all be reminded that the University of Indianapolis is a welcoming and inclusive environment, denounces actions such as these, and does not tolerate anti-Semitic actions or any behavior that is aligned with ideologies that promote hate,” Manuel said in the email. “We will not condone any behavior that impedes our efforts at creating an environment founded on the principles of equity and inclusion.”

The swastika was left behind in eraser residue and was easily removed from the wall after it was found, however, the university is taking the anti-Semitic symbol seriously, Manuel said. 

“Whether it’s spray-painted or etched like this, the pain and the grossness of the hate is still there, so we want to treat both the same,” Manuel said. 

The university has been in contact with Lindsey Mintz, the executive director of the Indianapolis Jewish Community Relations Council, to discuss ways to create learning moments for the campus community and to ensure that the appropriate response is made, according to the email.

The students are being provided with alternate accommodations.

Professionals in the Counseling Center also have been made available for any students, faculty or staff affected by this incident. 

“The university has a history of making sure we don’t tolerate anti-Semitic or raciallly biased or any hate speech or actions on campus. We have a really strong history of responding immediately and quickly, with force, when we see these,” Manuel said. “What’s happening on our campus is really indicative of what’s happening in the real world around us, and we’re going to use this moment to both quash the actions of the people that were acting in hate and educate those that are in our community and counsel those who are really affected by it, to make sure that they are able to be a part of our community moving forward.”

Read the full statement below:

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