May 31, 2012
Contact: Yehudah Meth For Immediate Release
MANY ADDITIONAL WITNESSES PREPARED TO COME FORWARD
Assemblyman Dov Hikind (D-Brooklyn) has asked Attorney General Eric Schneiderman to look into accusations of anti-Semitism at the highest levels of Brooklyn College. The Assemblyman says that although CUNY promised to independently investigate charges made by Brooklyn College staff that Provost William Tramontano demonstrated a pattern of racial discrimination against faculty and job candidates, what CUNY delivered was anything but independent.
“CUNY’s internal investigation was a sham,” said the Assemblyman. “The atmosphere of intimidation at Brooklyn College continues and the fear of retaliation is very real to staff. But many additional witnesses will come forward for the Attorney General.”
Last month, Assemblyman Hikind, along with 20 fellow lawmakers, contacted CUNY Chancellor Matthew Goldstein asking him to address what they considered a pervasive pattern of anti-Semitism at Brooklyn College originating from the Provost’s office. Among incidents cited, Observant Jewish faculty candidates were denied employment opportunities at the college despite the highest recommendations from the College’s Appointment Committee; promotions were denied to Orthodox Jews while given to far-less-deserving staff members; and biased language unbecoming of a staff member was attributed to Tramontano. In one case, Tramontano blocked the hiring of a highly qualified Orthodox Jewish woman recommended by his own committee with the words, “I already gave you a Miriam.”
“I am overwhelming disappointed by CUNY’s inability to address this matter honestly,” said Assemblyman Hikind, himself a Brooklyn College graduate. “It’s clear that a probe from the Attorney General is called for. With their identities protected by the Attorney General, many witnesses who have kept quiet until now are eager to offer evidence of what’s going on at Brooklyn College.”