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Action Needed: Illinois legislature set to address academic boycotts of Israel

Resolution SJR 59 condemns an academic boycott of Israel and needs support.

Following the passage of a resolution recommending an academic boycott of Israeli universities by a small association of university professors in December, hundreds of university presidents throughout the U.S. sharply denounced the move as an attack on academic freedom, including many in Illinois, representing schools public and private, urban and rural, large and small.

Several state legislatures around the country – and Congress – began considering appropriate responses to this damaging academic development. In Springfield, a few Illinois state legislators, along with JUF, decided to advance a joint senate/house resolution that condemns academic boycotts while applauding the strong statements by Illinois university presidents. Resolution SJR 59, sponsored by Senator Ira Silverstein, is scheduled to be heard in the Senate Judiciary committee at 4 p.m. this Tuesday, April 1.

Meanwhile, a vigorous campaign has been unleashed against the resolution and its supporters by those promoting boycotts of Israel and misrepresent the resolution as itself an attack on academic freedom.

JUF urges you to call the offices of the senate president and members of the judiciary committee in support of SJR 59 (the legislative assistants keep track of the calls), or to sign an electronic witness slip in support of the resolution. Please specify if you personally know the legislator or are a constituent. 

Share feedback on your communication with the legislator’s office with JUF’s state government affairs office at

Senate President John Cullerton (Chicago) or (217) 782-2728

Kwame Raoul (Chicago) or (217) 782-5338
John G. Mulroe (Chicago) or (217) 782-1035
William R. Haine (Alton) or (217) 782-5247
Don Harmon (Oak Park) or (217) 782-8176
Michael E. Hastings (Orland Hills) or (217) 782-9595
Toi W. Hutchinson (Olympia Fields) or (217) 782-7419
Michael Noland (Elgin) no email listed or (217) 782-7746
Ira I. Silverstein (Chicago) or (217) 782-5500
Kirk W. Dillard (Hinsdale) or (217) 782-8148
Jason A. Barickman(Bloomingdale) or or (217) 782-6597
Darin M. LaHood (Dunlap) or (217) 782-1942
Dale A. Righter (Matton) or (217) 782-6674

For those with time and patience, sign an electronic witness slip in support of the resolution:

  1. Go to
  2. GA dashboard (written in red).
  3. Register to participate on site if you have not already done so.
  4. Senate
  5. Committee hearings
  6. Month (tab in the middle)
  7. Judiciary Committee: Go to far-right icon
  8. SJR 59: Go to far-right icon for the witness slip
  9. Sign in Support.


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