CARSON CITY, Nev. – A new bill strengthening Holocaust and Genocide education in Nevada was signed into law Tuesday by Governor Steve Sisolak.
Assembly Bill 231 is bipartisan legislation sponsored by Assemblywomen Lesley Cohen and Lisa Krasner and supported by Lieutenant Governor Kate Marshall. It passed out of the state legislature with unanimous support.
“While the nation faces a rising tide of antisemitism, the unanimous bipartisan support this legislation received is a testament to the fact that Holocaust and genocide education must be a priority for all Nevadans,” said Jolie Brislin, ADL’s Nevada Regional Director. “With education comes empathy, understanding, and dialogue essential for the prevention of future atrocities, and ensuring that ‘Never Again’ means never again for everyone.”
The bill will establish an educational committee within the Nevada Department of Education to evaluate curriculum standards, inventory classroom materials, and assess instructor training needs. In addition to education relating to the Holocaust, the bill also addresses other genocides such as the Armenian, Cambodian, Darfur, Guatemalan and Rwandan genocides.
“Education about the Holocaust is a central pillar of our community’s Jewish identity, and we hope that through this legislation, we will share our stories, our history, with students across Nevada,” said Stefanie Tuzman, President and CEO at Jewish Nevada. “Teaching our community’s history accurately, with respect to the individual experiences of those who survived the Holocaust, is one of our top priorities, and this bill will help Nevada meet that goal.”
A coalition of organizations including ADL Nevada, Israeli-American Civic Action Network – Nevada, Jewish Nevada, and the Armenian National Committee of America, Western Region, advocated in support of the legislation.
“In signing this bill today, Governor Sisolak and Nevada’s legislators spoke with one voice, united in agreement about the importance of Holocaust education, especially at a time when we are facing a historic rise in antisemitism,” said Dillon Hosier, CEO at the Israeli-American Civic Action Network. “And, we’re proud that Nevadans across the state, from a diverse coalition of community organizations, came together to support this vital legislation.”
Specifically, Assembly Bill 231 accomplishes the following:
- Establishes definitions of Holocaust and genocides and sets specific parameters for what genocide is and what quality education around this topic should include.
- Creates a subcommittee that will report what the Nevada Department of Education and school districts require for teaching the Holocaust and genocides, including materials, training, and curriculum.
- Appoints members to the subcommittee from nonprofit organizations, the Department of Education, school districts, the Governor’s Advisory Council on Education Relating to the Holocaust, and the Armenian Community, and other communities affected by genocide.