Columbia University has taken the decision to suspend its student groups, Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) and Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP), due to repeated violations of the university’s event policies. The suspension will be in effect until the end of the fall term, according to Gerald Rosberg, Senior Executive Vice President of the University and Chair of the Special Committee on Campus Safety.
The university’s statement emphasizes that the suspension means that SJP and JVP will not be allowed to organize events on campus or receive funding from the university. However, the lifting of the suspension will be contingent upon both groups demonstrating a commitment to compliance with university policies and engaging in consultations with university officials.
Rosberg reiterated that all student groups, including SJP and JVP, are expected to follow the university’s policies and procedures to ensure the safety of the community and to prevent disruptions to core university activities. He also stressed the importance of providing space for student groups to engage in debate, advocacy, and protest, with the expectation that community members will cooperate with university administrators to maintain a safe environment.
In recent times, tensions have risen on the Ivy League campus over the Palestinian terrorist attack against Israel. Last month, an Israeli student was attacked by a woman with a stick outside Columbia’s main library. Professor Shai Davidai has been critical of the university’s response to pro-terror students, accusing President Minouche Shafik of cowardice for not taking decisive action.
Professor Davidai expressed disappointment in the university’s lack of response, contrasting it with the actions of President Joe Biden and New York City Mayor Eric Adams in addressing terrorism. He highlighted the need for the university to prioritize the safety of its students and called for stronger action against pro-terror student organizations.
Overall, Columbia University’s suspension of SJP and JVP is a result of their repeated violations of event policies. The university aims to ensure the safety of the campus community and maintain an environment conducive to academic and extracurricular activities while allowing space for debate and protest.