Campaign Against Antisemitism applauds Universities UK for releasing a guide on how to tackle antisemitism.
Universities UK represents 140 universities in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland and its mission is “to create the conditions for UK universities to be the best in the world; maximising their positive impact locally, nationally and globally.”
The guide was published on 11th June and is titled: “Tackling antisemitism: practical guidance for universities.” It was drafted to focus on three main issues: widespread limited understanding of antisemitism; an under-reporting of antisemitic incidents and issues with complaints processes; and online harassment.
The guide is a nineteen-page document which describes these problems, along with a section dedicated to “suggested actions and best practice” for each.
It also discusses the International Definition of Antisemitism. Notably, it recognises that the eleven examples that accompany the Definition are integral to it: “The definition is followed by 11 examples which demonstrate how antisemitism may manifest in practice.”
The guide also rightly emphasises that the Definition does not stifle freedom of expression: “The [D]efinition should not be seen as restricting free speech or academic freedom, and universities that choose to adopt the definition should make sure it is used and understood in combination with other duties and protections.” Campaign Against Antisemitism has also produced an accessible guide to why the Definition does not stifle freedom of expression.
The final section of the guide is dedicated to case studies and cites the University of Essex, Middlesex University, the University of Birmingham, and Buckinghamshire New University as examples. Here, the guide briefly details each university’s history of dealing with antisemitism, and its process of adopting the Definition.
If any students are concerned about antisemitism on campus or need assistance, they can call us on 0330 822 0321, or e-mail [email protected].