Plaintiffs’ Attorneys Organize National Effort to Sue Universities for Failing to Create a Safe Learning Environment for Jewish Students

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Levin Papantonio Rafferty (LPR), one of largest and most recognized plaintiffs’ law firms in America, will host a series of webinars exploring how to sue universities for a lack of antisemitism policies and other ways in which the institutions have facilitated campus-based antisemitism. Attorneys will meet to discuss legal paths for holding university presidents, professors, and administrations accountable for instances of antisemitism and racism Jewish students face on campus. 

LPR will present the webinar series, inviting top U.S. plaintiffs’ attorneys to join the discussion.  MTMP, organizers of a bi-annual seminar for mass torts and class action lawyers, will host the event. 

LPR Senior Partner Mike Papantonio said attorneys in attendance will talk about multiple angles for lawsuits, including constitutional, statutory, Civil Rights Act of 1983, and even harassment. 

Papantonio referred to Columbia University tenured professor Joseph Massad as just one example of how the school’s administration has helped cultivate a dangerous environment for Jewish students. One day after the brutal October 7, 2023, Hamas massacres of innocent Israeli citizens, Massad posted on The Electronic Intifada about “the stunning victory of the Palestinian resistance,” calling the attacks “awesome.” The message prompted multiple petitions to Columbia University to immediately terminate the employment of Joseph Massad, stating, “Freedom of Speech cannot be abused. And when one is in a position of authority and power, they must be held responsible for that speech.”

“Despite his rampant abuse of this country’s freedom of speech laws, this professor has not been punished and remains in good standing with Columbia University,” Papantonio said. “It’s just one way the universities to which we entrust the safety and well-being of our children have violated this trust and nurtured a hostile environment for Jewish students.”  

“Make no mistake, the attorneys who gather this week will wield every legal mechanism in our collective arsenal to hold these institutions accountable,” Papantonio added.

The April issue of MTMP Magazine featured an article (“If Not Us, Then Who?”) by Attorney Benjamin Schenk, of Fell Law, and Dr. Mark Goldfeder, Director of the National Jewish Advocacy Center, wherein the authors state, “Americans of all stripes are now asking the question: If college administrators are unwilling, unable, or unequipped to effectively respond, what role, if any, can civil attorneys play in upholding the rule of law and combating an ideology seemingly hell bent on destroying it? We believe that trial lawyers represent one of our societies’ last hopes to do so.” 

Schenk will participate in Friday’s webinar.