The United States House of Representatives overwhelmingly voted in favor of the Never Again Education Act to expand Holocaust education in the US.
This came in time as the world commemorated International Holocaust Remembrance Day and the 75th anniversary of the liberation of Aushwitz-Birkenau concentration camp.
Once enacted, the Never Again Education Act allows the expansion of the US Holocaust Memorial Museum’s education programming to teachers nationwide with resource materials that improves awareness and understanding of the Holocaust under a $10-million funding within a five-year timeframe.
It also establishes a federal program and fund to award Holocaust education grants to institutions that offer resources, classes, teacher trainings and student field trips.
New York (Democratic) Representative Carolyn Maloney authored the bill, which is co-sponsored by Representatives Elise Stefanik (New York Republican) and Don Bacon (Nebraska Republican).
“As we recommit ourselves to the promise of ‘Never Again’ on the 75th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau, I am reminded that the lessons of the Holocaust do not just apply to anti-Semitism but to all forms of hate and bigotry, and I can think of no better way to honor the memories of those murdered than to make sure our students know their names and their stories,” Maloney said.
She urged the Senate to act quickly on the bill, saying “If we do not learn from history, we are doomed to repeat it.”
Maloney’s bill received an overwhelming 393-5 votes, with four Republicans and one Independent representative voting against it.
House Speaker Nansi Pelosi said there is a great urgency for Holocaust education amid a surge of appalling anti-Semitic and other hate crimes.
Rep. Elise Stefanik, for her part added, “as we continue to condemn horrific acts of anti-Semitism across the world, we must also take proactive measures to educate and provide states and schools with the resources necessary to incorporate Holocaust education into their classrooms, ensuring that all students understand the evils of Holocaust and its impact.”
The passage of the Never Again Education Act earned praises from various renowned Jewish institutions such as the Hadassah, Christian United for Israel, Anti-Defamation League and the American Jewish Congress, all of them lauding US lawmakers for recognizing the importance of Holocaust education in building tolerant communities and combating hatred, bigotry and anti-Semitism.