Responding to Reckless Comments During Campus Demonstration

Thursday, Nov. 9, 2023

Dear Members of the Syracuse University Community:

We are writing this evening to express our deep concern for reckless and incendiary statements made during an otherwise peaceful demonstration that happened on our campus earlier this afternoon.

We have learned that one of the speakers specifically called out a number of Jewish student organizations by name, accusing them of being “complicit” in genocide. Video of this conduct is already circulating and creating fear among members of our community. This kind of reprehensible behavior put a group of our students, based on their identity, at risk of harassment, retaliation and potential violence, although we are not aware of any current threats. We are investigating the statements and working to identify the speaker. Any conduct found to be in violation of University policies will be met with the appropriate disciplinary action. In addition, the University has already received multiple bias complaints and will promptly investigate all reports through established University processes.

The University will be taking additional action to ensure the safety and well-being of our community, including an increased presence and patrols of Department of Public Safety personnel. Additionally, the University is in touch with law enforcement agencies, including the FBI, to monitor for any specific threats.

While Syracuse University remains strongly committed to protecting free speech and academic freedom, we must respond when conduct, language or action directly threatens the safety of our students.


Gretchen Ritter
Vice Chancellor, Provost and Chief Academic Officer

Allen Groves
Senior Vice President and Chief Student Experience Officer