Campaign Against Antisemitism (CAA) has announced the results of our Antisemitism Barometer research, a multiyear study conducted by CAA and YouGov.
We now have data that show that in a very British way, fairly and quietly, Britons have been rejecting antisemitic prejudice. British society has shunned a growing worldwide addiction to antisemitism and proved that so-called British values are no mere buzzphrase, but are embedded in our national being.
However, our research shows that British Jews have become so fearful of mounting antisemitic crime and the failure to excise antisemites from politics that they have increasingly considered leaving Britain altogether. Our research clearly shows that British Jews have pointed their fingers at the Crown Prosecution Service and the Labour Party.
If British society can fight antisemitism, why are our world-renowned criminal justice system and some of our famous political parties still doing too little?
YouGov was commissioned by CAA to survey attitudes towards Jews amongst the British population in 2015, 2016 and 2017, and CAA worked with partners in the Jewish community to survey British Jews’ responses to antisemitism in 2016 and 2017. The YouGov sample sizes were 3,411 in 2015, 1,660 in 2016, and 1,614 in 2017. CAA sample sizes were 1,857 in 2016, and 2,025 in 2017. The results of our survey of British Jews cannot be compared to a similar we conducted in 2015, due to a substantial change in our methodology. The full report is available on our website.
The research has revealed that almost a third of British Jews have considered leaving the UK in the past two years.
Only 59% of British Jews feel welcome in the UK, and 17% feel unwelcome. For the past two years, 37% of British Jews have been concealing their Judaism in public.
Last month, CAA published police figures obtained under the Freedom of Information Act showing that there has been a 45% surge in antisemitic crime since 2014. Additionally CAA revealed that the CPS has yet to prosecute more than two dozen antisemitic crimes per year.
52% of British Jews said that the CPS is not doing enough to fight antisemitism, and only 39% of British Jews felt confident that antisemitic hate crime would be prosecuted.
76% of British Jews feel that recent political events have resulted in increased hostility towards Jews, and for two years, more than 4 in 5 British Jews have considered the Labour Party to be harbouring antisemites in its ranks.
The failure of the criminal justice system and political parties to tackle antisemitism is in stark contrast with the attitudes of the British public towards Jews. YouGov’s polling for CAA found that antisemitism, measured by how many respondents agreed with seven antisemitic statements, has been in decline for the past three years. In 2015, 45% of British people held at least one antisemitic view, but that fell to 39% in 2016 and then dropped again to 36% in 2017.
In the report, CAA calls on the Government to urgently implement the recommendations of our last two National Antisemitic Crime Audits, and for all political parties to adopt our manifesto for fighting antisemitism. Our recommendations for the criminal justice system include basic measures such as producing specific training and guidance on antisemitic hate crime for officers and prosecutors, instructing Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary to review all police forces’ responses to antisemitic crime, appointing a senior officer in each force with responsibility for overseeing the response to antisemitic hate crime, and requiring the Crown Prosecution Service to record and regularly publish details of cases involving antisemitism and their outcomes, as police forces are already required to do. Our recommendations for political parties are to adopt the Government’s definition of antisemitism, as many have, and to enforce it using transparent and robust disciplinary processes, with expulsion from the party in the worst cases.