Pro-Palestinian Group at Loyola Appeals Sanctions Over Campus Violations

Students for Justice in Palestine and campus Hillel were ruled to have broken university rules in September 9 incident.

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The chapter of Students for Justice in Palestine at Loyola University Chicago is appealing a university ruling that the group violated campus regulations.

SJP appealed on Monday, three days after a board of Loyola administrators ruled that the pro-Palestinian group and the campus Hillel had broken university rules in an incident on September 9.

In the September 9 incident, SJP members attempted to block and protest a table set up by Hillel to promote Taglit-Birthright Israel trips. Consequently, the Loyola Chicago SJP chapter was temporarily suspended and then reinstated.

The board ruled that Hillel had violated the university’s “solicitation policy” by setting up a promotional table for a non-Loyola organization without the proper approvals. SJP, in turn, was found culpable for failing to gain prior approval to hold an organized demonstration.

As a penalty, the board has placed SJP on probation for the rest of this academic year. Also, the pro-Palestinian organization must “participate in training related to inter-group dialogue methods to expand the group’s knowledge and skills in engaging in difficult and meaningful discussions,” according to the university.

For Hillel’s violation, its officers must help to provide training and information to other student organizations about “the importance of registering events on campus, specifically tabling events.”

In a news release issued Monday, SJP member Said Zahraa Nasser argued that the sanctions were not equitable given that both groups had been penalized for “essentially the same violation: not registering our respective events.”

Hillel did not appeal the ruling, and the deadline to do so has passed.