Governor Noem Signs Historic Bill to Combat Antisemitism into Law

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March 6, 2024

Contact: Amelia Joy


Governor Noem Signs Historic Bill to Combat Antisemitism into Law


PIERRE, S.D. – Today, Governor Kristi Noem signed HB 1076, which requires the consideration of the definition of antisemitism when investigating unfair or discriminatory practices, into law.


“Ever since the horrific terrorist attacks on the State of Israel on October 7th, 2023, we have seen a shocking spike in antisemitic acts of hatred around the world, including some isolated incidents right here in South Dakota,” said Governor Noem. “I am very proud to sign this historic bill to keep our Jewish people secure. I hope more states will follow our leadership.”


This bill defines antisemitism and makes it easier to prove when discriminatory conduct is motivated by antisemitism. This important and impactful legislation will ensure the safety of Jewish people and strengthen South Dakota’s anti-discrimination laws.


Governor Noem was joined by Elan Carr, the CEO of the Israeli-American Council for Action, nationally renowned Jewish leader and founder of the Jacobson Society Dan Rosen, Rabbi Dr. Mark Goldfeder, the Director of the National Jewish Advocacy Center, Rabbi Mendel Alperowitz of the Chabad Jewish Center of South Dakota, Renie Schreiber, on behalf of Yinam Cohen, Consul General of Israel to the Midwest, Jordan Cope from Stand With Us, the prime sponsors of the bill Representative Fred Deutsch and Senator Jim Mehlhaff, and many other prominent Jewish leaders.


“This is an important moment at an urgent time,” said Elan S. Carr, CEO of the Israeli-American Council and former U.S. Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Anti-Semitism. “By adopting into law and implementing the global standard for defining antisemitism, South Dakota is making a powerful statement that the evil of Jew-hatred has no place in our state or our country. We are deeply grateful to Gov. Noem and to the state legislature, especially to Rep. Deutsch and Sen. Mehlhaff, for showing principled leadership and for embodying the best of American values. Given the horrors of 10/7 and the appalling rise of anti-Jewish violence and discrimination since, this could not have come at a more important time.”


“Since October 7th, antisemitism has skyrocketed across this country by roughly 400%. And part of the problem is you cannot fight something you cannot define,” said Mark Goldfeder, Director of the National Jewish Advocacy Center. “By adopting this bill and the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance definition of antisemitism, South Dakota has sent a clear message that there is no place for hate in this state.”


“If a Jewish child in South Dakota is going to be more safe and more protected, it’s going to be because we did here today,” said Rabbi Mendel.


A photo of Governor Noem signing this historic legislation can be found here. You can view the full bill signing ceremony here.


Governor Noem has signed 137 bills into law this legislative session.