House clears Neilson measure to recognize International Holocaust Remembrance Day in PA on Jan. 27

HARRISBURG, Jan. 22 – The Pennsylvania House of Representatives today adopted a resolution introduced by Rep. Ed Neilson to recognize Jan. 27, 2020 as International Holocaust Remembrance Day in Pennsylvania.

Between 1933 and 1945, nearly 17 million people were tragically murdered in the horrifying, state-sponsored genocide known as the Holocaust,” Neilson said. “It is critical to our humanity and to the memory of the millions of people who were murdered during the Holocaust that we commemorate Jan. 27 – 75 years to the day of the liberation of the largest and deadliest concentration camp, Auschwitz-Birkenau – as International Holocaust Remembrance Day in Pennsylvania.”

The Holocaust was a human rights crisis of epic proportions. While Jews were the priority target of Nazi racism, other groups within Germany were persecuted for racial reasons.

Studies have shown that a growing number of Americans lack a basic knowledge of the Holocaust and the events that led up to it. Commemorating the day is one way to try to educate the public, Neilson said.

It is also about more than just remembering history and honoring the victims, Neilson added.

This is a day to remember and mourn, and a day to stand up against hate and violence,” Neilson said. “We have seen recent violent acts inspired by hate perpetrated against people throughout our country, including the horrific attack at the Tree of Life Building in Pittsburgh in October 2018. It’s so incredibly important that when we look back at history and remember what has happened, that we also look at the things happening around us right now and find a way to bring tolerance, love and acceptance into the conversation.”

House Resolution 658, recognizing Jan. 27, 2020 as International Holocaust Remembrance Day in Pennsylvania, was adopted unanimously.