House Republicans Pass Legislation Combating Anti-Semitism in Virginia

gshipley2023 General Assembly

RICHMOND — Governor Youngkin has made combating anti-semitism a key focus of his administration, and House Republicans applaud his efforts.

Earlier today, the House passed a number of bills that will help fight this scourge by defining anti-Semitism according to internationally accepted standards, adding attacks on ethnicity to Virginia’s hate crime statutes, and ensuring that Virginia does not do business with companies that boycott Israel.

“Anti-Semitism is a blight on society, wherever it occurs. There is no place for it in our Commonwealth, and I could not be more proud of the steps that the House of Delegates has taken to combat this ancient hatred,” said House Speaker Todd Gilbert, R-Shenandoah. “Every Virginian can, must, and will be free to practice their faith without fear, and to live in their communities without fear of violence. Our actions this session are an important step forward toward that goal.”

“The legislation that House Republicans just passed reinforces our commitment to protecting Jewish Virginians from hate crimes and discrimination,” added Majority Leader Terry Kilgore, R-Scott. “We are taking meaningful action to support the Jewish community and combat the blight of anti-Semitism.”

Bills that passed during today’s session include:

• House Bill 1606 defines anti-Semitism according to the definition adopted by the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA).

• House Bill 2208 adds safeguards from unlawful discrimination based on ethnicity.

• House Bill 1898 ensures Virginia does not do business with companies that boycott Israel.