Council Response to Antisemitism in the Labour Party

Press release

27th March 2018

Today we offer our unconditional support to the Board of Deputies of British Jews
and the Jewish Leadership Council in their letter to Jeremy Corbyn, Leader of the
Labour Party, condemning the rise of antisemitism within the Labour Party. We also
condemn his close involvement with, and support of, known antisemites and the
Labour Party’s weak response following the Chakrabarti Report.

Some of our members have witnessed virulent antisemitic comments on social
media in forums supporting Labour, comments about Holocaust denial, blood libel
and other tropes which could have been taken from the Protocols of the Elders of
Zion. We have seen Labour supporters accuse Jews of financing the slave trade, of
collaborating with the Nazis and conflating Israel with the Nazis. Whilst a few
offenders have been sanctioned by the party, the disciplinary process has moved so
slowly that it appears ineffective.

We recognise and support those people within the Labour Party who are appalled at
the antisemitism in their party and continue to fight against it.

We call on the Labour Party to not only condemn antisemitism but to act to expel
those who behave in this way. Please show your support and stand in solidarity withthe Jewish community across the UK.

Jewish Representative Council President, Sharon Bannister, said, “I am saddened
and dismayed by the increasing incidents of antisemitism occurring within the Labour
Party and the lack of real action taken by their leadership to challenge this racism. I
hope that the statement issued by Jeremy Corbyn will not just be a series of words
but that we will now see timely action taken to rid the party of racists.”

Jewish Representative Council Chair of Executive, Jonny Wineberg, said,
“Antisemitism from whatever quarter is unacceptable. Those seeking power through
political office have a particular responsibility to eschew all forms of discrimination.
Jeremy Corbyn’s failure to do this for several years has been a source of distress for
our community and we hope that we can now see him act appropriately to repair the
damage done.”

The Jewish Representative Council of Greater Manchester and Region represents
and supports the largest Jewish community in the United Kingdom outside London.
Our members, who are elected by their constituent bodies, are representative of
community organisations across the political and religious spectrum, from right to left
and religious to secular. We are all encompassing and non-judgemental.

For more information about this release, please email Michael Rubinstein,
Secretary and Chair of the Council’s Antisemitism & Human Rights Working
Group: [email protected]