A new report shows an alarming surge in antisemitic incidents in the UK, particularly since the Hamas attack of 7th October 2023.

According to the report by CST, more than 4,000 antisemitic incidents were recorded in 2023, marking a significant increase from previous years. This spike in hatred has been attributed to the sheer volume of antisemitism following the Hamas attack of 7th October 2023.

Mark Gardner, Chief Executive of CST, described the situation as “an absolute disgrace”, emphasising the resilience of British Jews in the face of this surge in hatred. He stated: “British Jews are strong and resilient, but the explosion in hatred against our community is deeply concerning. It occurs in schools, universities, workplaces, on the streets, and all over social media.”

The report outlined a range of disturbing incidents, including 3,328 cases of abusive behaviour, 266 incidents of assault, 305 threats and 182 instances of damage and desecration. Alarmingly, almost a fifth of the recorded incidents involved perpetrators under the age of eighteen, highlighting the urgent need for education and intervention.

Furthermore, the report observed that, for the first time, at least one antisemitic incident was recorded in every single police region in the UK in the course of one year, demonstrating how widespread the problem has become.

A spokesperson for Campaign Against Antisemitism said: “The CST’s figures reveal the explosion in antisemitic hate crime that the Jewish community has experienced in the past several months. It is particularly notable that the surge in anti-Jewish racism began in the immediate wake of 7th October, indisputably demonstrating that antisemites in the UK were emboldened by Hamas’s massacre of Jews, and that is why we are seeing what we are seeing on our streets and campuses, in workplaces and cultural institutions and online. There is a sickness in our country, and the sclerotic and overly-generous reaction of our criminal justice system shows that our institutions have utterly failed to grasp the gravity of the threat that our society faces right now.”

Around the world, International Holocaust Memorial Day was marked with dignity and respect. But not everywhere.

Some, like Labour MP Kate Osamor, used the occasion to imply in a message to constituents that what is happening in Gaza is comparable to the Holocaust and, by strong implication, that Israel acts like the Nazis, a breach of the International Definition of Antisemitism.

Her apology rang hollow, as if she was unaware of the meaning of her own remarks. Clearly, her understanding of antisemitism is deficient and not in accordance with that of her Party, which has adopted the Definition.

We have called on the Labour Party to suspend her, and she must be required to undertake antisemitism training by a reputable provider.

Meanwhile, at anti-Israel demonstrations in the UK, protesters desecrated the solemnity of the day, not only by equating Israel to Nazis as well, but also in providing a masterclass in how a phenomenon like Holocaust-denial begins, as they cast doubt on, played down or outright denied the Hamas atrocities of 7th October.

Leicester Square attack

Not only are the police failing to police the weekly anti-Israel demonstrations adequately, but they are also failing individual Jews under attack.

Last weekend, in the early hours of the morning, three Jews were physically assaulted by ten men in Leicester Square, resulting in serious injuries. Incredibly, not a single bystanders assisted.

Although the victims called the police while the attack was underway, and notwithstanding that it was taking place in the heart of London, police officers only showed up after half an hour, by which time the perpetrators had fled the scene.

The Metropolitan Police must identify and arrest the attackers. The victims are also calling on the police to apologise for failing them when they needed them most.

Watch the victims speak out here.

“Generation hate”: frightening new polling published

Campaign Against Antisemitism commissioned King’s College London to survey British adults’ attitudes towards Jews, using YouGov.

The polling has revealed worrying levels of anti-Jewish prejudice among the British public, with particularly frightening rates among young people aged between 18 and 24.

Published in the week of Holocaust Memorial Day, the polling raises serious questions about whether lessons about the antisemitism that motivated the Nazis have really been learned by British young adults.

  • A quarter of British people over 64 believe that Israel treats the Palestinians like the Nazis treated the Jews. Among 18-24 year olds, it is over a third.
  • Almost one fifth of the British public believes that Israel can get away with anything because its supporters control the media. Among 18-24 year olds, it is more than a quarter.
  • Compared to the general population (one in twenty), double the proportion of 18-24s (almost one in ten) do not believe that Jewish people are just as loyal to Britain as other British people.
  • Compared to the general population, more than double the proportion of 18-24 year olds are not as open to having Jewish friends as they are to having friends from other sections of British society.
  • While almost one fifth of the British public believes that Israel and its supporters are a bad influence on our democracy, that rises to over one quarter of 18-24 year olds.
  • 7% of Britons do not believe that Israel is right to defend itself against those who want to destroy it. That figure doubles to 14% of 18-24 year olds.
  • 14% of British people are not comfortable spending time with people who openly support Israel. Among 18-24 year olds, that figure rises to 21% – more than one fifth of the young population.
  • More than one in ten young Britons do not believe that Israel has a right to exist as a homeland for the Jewish people.
  • More than one in ten 18-24 year olds believe that Jewish people talk about the Holocaust just to further their political agenda.

Other findings from the survey:

  • More than one in ten British people believe that Jewish people chase money more than other people do.
  • Only three quarters of British people believe that Jewish people can be trusted just as much as other British people in business.
  • More than one in ten Britons believe that, compared to other groups, Jewish people have too much power in the media.

The rhetoric that we are seeing online, on television and on our streets is radicalising the British public, but it is the rates of antisemitism that we have discovered among 18-24 year olds that are most frightening. This is generation hate.

On the occasion of Holocaust Memorial Day, our country needs an urgent rethink about how we teach about antisemitism. If young people cannot see the relationship between the genocidal antisemitism of the Nazis and the genocidal antisemitism of Hamas, and, as a society, we refuse to talk about how our attitudes towards Israel and its supporters are influenced by antisemitic prejudice, then we are clearly not talking about antisemitism properly.

Our education is failing the next generation, and our society is suffering as a result. It is British Jews who are paying the price.

The YouGov survey was designed and analysed by experts at KCL on behalf of Campaign Against Antisemitism. Total sample size was 2,084 adults. Fieldwork was undertaken between 8th-11th December 2023 by YouGov plc. The survey was carried out online. The figures have been weighted and are representative of all GB adults (aged 18+). The full results, background information and methodology can be found here.

This weekend saw the memory of the Holocaust appropriated to abuse the Jewish community. What would the British soldiers who liberated the Nazi death camps make of Britain today?

Campaign Against Antisemitism (CAA) commissioned King’s College London to survey British adults’ attitudes towards Jews, using YouGov.

The polling has revealed worrying levels of anti-Jewish prejudice among the British public, with particularly frightening rates among young people aged between 18 and 24.

Coming on the eve of Holocaust Memorial Day, the polling raises serious questions about whether lessons about the antisemitism that motivated the Nazis have really been learned by British young adults.

  • A quarter of British people over 64 believe that Israel treats the Palestinians like the Nazis treated the Jews. Among 18-24 year olds, it is over a third.
  • Almost one fifth of the British public believes that Israel can get away with anything because its supporters control the media. Among 18-24 year olds, it is more than a quarter.
  • Compared to the general population (one in twenty), double the proportion of 18-24s (almost one in ten) do not believe that Jewish people are just as loyal to Britain as other British people.
  • Compared to the general population, more than double the proportion of 18-24 year olds are not as open to having Jewish friends as they are to having friends from other sections of British society.
  • While almost one fifth of the British public believes that Israel and its supporters are a bad influence on our democracy, that rises to over one quarter of 18-24 year olds.
  • 7% of Britons do not believe that Israel is right to defend itself against those who want to destroy it. That figure doubles to 14% of 18-24 year olds.
  • 14% of British people are not comfortable spending time with people who openly support Israel. Among 18-24 year olds, that figure rises to 21% – more than one fifth of the young population.
  • More than one in ten young Britons do not believe that Israel has a right to exist as a homeland for the Jewish people.
  • More than one in ten 18-24 year olds believe that Jewish people talk about the Holocaust just to further their political agenda.

Other findings from the survey:

  • More than one in ten British people believe that Jewish people chase money more than other people do.
  • Only three quarters of British people believe that Jewish people can be trusted just as much as other British people in business.
  • More than one in ten Britons believe that, compared to other groups, Jewish people have too much power in the media.

The YouGov survey was designed and analysed by experts at KCL on behalf of CAA.

Total sample size was 2,084 adults. Fieldwork was undertaken between 8th-11th December 2023 by YouGov plc. The survey was carried out online. The figures have been weighted and are representative of all GB adults (aged 18+).

A spokesperson for Campaign Against Antisemitism said: “The rhetoric that we are seeing online, on television and on our streets is radicalising the British public, but it is the rates of antisemitism that we have discovered among 18-24 year olds that are most frightening. This is generation hate.

“On the eve of Holocaust Memorial Day, our country needs an urgent rethink about how we teach about antisemitism. If young people cannot see the relationship between the genocidal antisemitism of the Nazis and the genocidal antisemitism of Hamas, and, worse still, refuse to talk about how our attitudes towards Israel and its supporters are influenced by antisemitic prejudice, then we are clearly not talking about antisemitism properly.

“Our education is failing the next generation, and our society is suffering as a result. It is British Jews who are paying the price.”

Full results

Jewish people can be trusted just as much as other British people in business.

  • Strongly agree 42
  • Agree 33
  • Neither agree nor disagree 21
  • Disagree 3
  • Strongly disagree 2
  • TOTAL AGREE 75
  • TOTAL DISAGREE 5

Only three quarters of British people believe that Jewish people can be trusted just as much as other British people in business.

Jewish people are just as loyal to Britain as other British people.    

  • Strongly agree 34
  • Agree 32
  • Neither agree nor disagree 29
  • Disagree 3
  • Strongly disagree 2
  • TOTAL AGREE 66
  • TOTAL DISAGREE 5 (rises to 9% among young people, i.e. 18-24)

Compared to the general population (one in twenty), double the proportion of 18-24s (almost one in ten) do not believe that Jewish people are just as loyal to Britain as other British people.

I am just as open to having Jewish friends as I am to having friends from other sections of British society.    

  • Strongly agree 56
  • Agree 28
  • Neither agree nor disagree 13
  • Disagree 1
  • Strongly disagree 1
  • TOTAL AGREE 84
  • TOTAL DISAGREE 2 (rises to 5% among young people)

Compared to the general population (2%), more than double the proportion of 18-24 year olds (5%) are not as open to having Jewish friends as they are to having friends from other sections of British society.

Compared to other groups, Jewish people have too much power in the media.

  • Strongly agree 4
  • Agree 8
  • Neither agree nor disagree 42
  • Disagree 24
  • Strongly disagree 22
  • TOTAL AGREE 12 (rises to 16% among young people)
  • TOTAL DISAGREE 46

More than one in ten Britons believe that, compared to other groups, Jewish people have too much power in the media.

Jewish people talk about the Holocaust just to further their political agenda.

  • Strongly agree 2
  • Agree 6
  • Neither agree nor disagree 30
  • Disagree 29
  • Strongly disagree 33
  • TOTAL AGREE 8 (rises to 11% among young people)
  • TOTAL DISAGREE 62

More than one in ten 18-24 year olds believe that Jewish people talk about the Holocaust just to further their political agenda.

Jewish people chase money more than other people do.    

  • Strongly agree 3
  • Agree 8
  • Neither agree nor disagree 43
  • Disagree 21
  • Strongly disagree 25
  • TOTAL AGREE 11
  • TOTAL DISAGREE 46

More than one in ten British people believe that Jewish people chase money more than other people do.

I am comfortable spending time with people who openly support Israel    

  • Strongly agree 14
  • Agree 24
  • Neither agree nor disagree 48
  • Disagree 9
  • Strongly disagree 5
  • TOTAL AGREE 38
  • TOTAL DISAGREE 14 (rises to 21% among young people)

14% of British people are not comfortable spending time with people who openly support Israel. Among 18-24 year olds, that figure rises to 21% – more than one fifth of the young population.

Israel has a right to exist as a homeland for the Jewish people    

  • Strongly agree 21
  • Agree 35
  • Neither agree nor disagree 37
  • Disagree 4
  • Strongly disagree 3
  • TOTAL AGREE 56
  • TOTAL DISAGREE 7 (rises to 11% among young people)

More than one in ten young Britons do not believe that Israel has a right to exist as a homeland for the Jewish people.

Israel is right to defend itself against those who want to destroy it    

  • Strongly agree 20
  • Agree 38
  • Neither agree nor disagree     34
  • Disagree 4
  • Strongly disagree 3
  • TOTAL AGREE 58
  • TOTAL DISAGREE 7 (rises to 14% among young people)

Seven percent of Britons, and fourteen percent of young Britons, do not believe that Israel is right to defend itself against those who want to destroy it.

Israel and its supporters are a bad influence on our democracy    

  • Strongly agree 7
  • Agree 10
  • Neither agree nor disagree 51
  • Disagree 21
  • Strongly disagree 12
  • TOTAL AGREE 17 (rises to 28% among young people)
  • TOTAL DISAGREE 33

Over one quarter of young people believe that Israel and its supporters are a bad influence on our democracy, compared to almost one fifth of the wider British public.

Israel can get away with anything because its supporters control the media    

  • Strongly agree 6
  • Agree 12
  • Neither agree nor disagree 45
  • Disagree 23
  • Strongly disagree 15
  • TOTAL AGREE 18 (rises to 26% among young people)
  • TOTAL DISAGREE 38

Almost one fifth of the British public believes that Israel can get away with anything because its supporters control the media. Among young people, it is more than a quarter.

Israel treats the Palestinians like the Nazis treated the Jews    

  • Strongly agree 12
  • Agree 18
  • Neither agree nor disagree 43
  • Disagree 15
  • Strongly disagree 12
  • TOTAL AGREE 30 (rises to 34% of young people)
  • TOTAL DISAGREE 27

A quarter of British people over 64 believe that Israel treats the Palestinians like the Nazis treated the Jews. Among 18-24 year olds, it is over a third.

Background and Methodology

The twelve statements – which include six relating to Judeophobic antisemitism and six relating to anti-Zionist antisemitism – together comprise the Generalised Antisemitism Scale.

The Generalised Antisemitism Scale was devised by Dr Daniel Allington of King’s College London, Dr David Hirsh of Goldsmiths, and Dr Louise Katz (then) of the University of Derby. The research behind the Generalised Antisemitism Scale has been peer reviewed.

In particular, in developing the Generalised Antisemitism Scale, they were guided by the International Definition of Antisemitism, which Campaign Against Antisemitism, together with other Jewish communal institutions from around the world, has long campaigned to be widely adopted. Further background on the Generalised Antisemitism Scale can be found here.

Our survey of British adults were conducted by YouGov Plc. The surveys were administered online to members of YouGov’s panel of over 1,000,000 British adults who have agreed to take part in surveys. E-mails were sent to adult panellists who fulfilled the requirements of the sample, inviting them to take part in the surveys, and providing a link to the survey. YouGov normally achieves a response rate of between 35% and 50% to surveys however this does vary depending on the subject matter, complexity and length of the questionnaire.

Total sample size was 2,084 adults. Fieldwork was undertaken between 8th-11th December 2023 by YouGov plc. The survey was carried out online. The figures have been weighted and are representative of all GB adults (aged 18+).

YouGov ensured that there were no duplicate responses and that all respondents were adults living in Great Britain.

The responding sample was weighted according to age and gender, social grade, political attention level, education, and region, in addition to past voting behaviour, to provide a representative reporting sample. The profile is derived from the Census as well as the mid-year population estimates and Annual Population Survey published by the Office for National Statistics.

It may be a new year, but sadly what we are seeing on our streets is still the same old hate.

Last week, there was an illegal anti-Israel protest, which our Demonstration and Event Monitoring Unit captured on film, and during the week there were genocidal calls outside the Houses of Parliament. Yesterday, there was another large protest, which our volunteers also monitored.

But even as these demonstrations take place week after week, the Mayor of London has failed to speak out and take action. Perhaps Sadiq Khan did not want to provoke the ire of antisemites, as the Mayor of Bristol did when he expressed solidarity with the victims of Hamas terror.

But Mr Khan is also London’s equivalent of a police and crime commissioner. He is the elected official in charge of policing in our capital city at a time when 90% of British Jews say that they are feeling intimidated and bullied into staying out of city centres, according to our representative polling of the Jewish community.

This weekend, Campaign Against Antisemitism called on the Mayor finally to speak out against the marches on our streets that regularly feature antisemitism, glorification of terrorism and incitement to intifada.

The Mayor is not above criticism. After all, why is it that it is okay to criticise the Mayor over, say, knife crime but not okay to criticise him over antisemitic hate crime? Why do some people seem to think Jewish Londoners do not have a right to expect solidarity and action from their city’s mayor at a time of record antisemitism?

There seems to be a cynical double standard, which we do not accept. We will continue to hold politicians and police chiefs to account, without fear or favour.

100 days in captivity

Today, British Jews have gathered at Trafalgar Square to mark 100 days since the brutal Hamas terror attack.

Contrary to the claims of antisemites, Zionism and a strong connection to Israel are core to the identity of most British Jews. Over the winter break, we published polling that shows that a near-unanimous 97% of British Jews feel personally connected to events happening in Israel, and eight in ten British Jews consider themselves to be a Zionist. Only six percent do not. That is why so many turned out today.

For 100 days, the hostages taken by Hamas have been held in captivity by the terrorist organisation, in unimaginable conditions.

Among them is Kfir Bibas, who turns one year old this month.

Campaign Against Antisemitism is proud to join the call of the Jewish community and its allies to Bring Them Home!

Parliament acts

This week has seen a variety of welcome developments in the House of Commons:

  • The Economic Activity of Public Bodies (Overseas Matters) Bill passed its third reading. Once it becomes law, it will ban public bodies from imposing their boycotts, divestment, or sanctions campaigns against foreign countries. Year after year, our polling has shown that an overwhelming majority of British Jews consider the tactics of the BDS campaign to be intimidatory.
  • MPs debated a proposal by Nickie Aiken MP relating to the contribution of British Jews to our country. Campaign Against Antisemitism provided a submission to all MPs in advance of the debate.
  • Andrew Percy MP raised the critical issue of antisemitism in schools. Prime Minister Rishi Sunak agreed that “there is no place for antisemitism or the glorification of terrorism in Britain, especially not in our classrooms.”

Our volunteers also met with MPs this week, and our Policy Unit continues to engage with parliamentarians and the Government on a regular basis as part of our policy advocacy.

Wiley performance cancelled

You may recall that, in 2020, the rapper Richard Cowie, known as Wiley, published antisemitic and potentially criminal posts on social media. Numerous platforms suspended his accounts in response to the scandal.

Campaign Against Antisemitism continues to seek criminal prosecution against Mr Cowie in relation to these posts, which he published from abroad.

In the meantime, we have made every effort to prevent his hate from being normalised. This week, for example, we wrote to a venue that was due to feature him in a gig. Following our correspondence, he has been dropped from the lineup.

New polling by Campaign Against Antisemitism has revealed a number of startling insights.

  • 69% of British Jews say that they are less likely to show visible signs of their Judaism right now.
  • Almost half of British Jews have considered leaving the UK due to antisemitism, since 7th October.
  • More than six in ten British Jews have either personally experienced or witnessed an antisemitic incident since 7th October or know somebody who has.
  • Only 16% of British Jews believe that the police treat antisemitic hate crime like other forms of hate crime, with two thirds believing that the police apply a double standard.
  • A staggering 90% of British Jews say that they would avoid travelling to a city centre if a major anti-Israel demonstration was taking place there. Our urban centres have become no-go zones for Jews.
  • A full 95% of British Jews believe that the Crown Prosecution Service should report statistics on prosecutions of antisemitic hate crimes.
  • 90% of the Jewish community believes that the British Government should proscribe Hizb ut-Tahrir.
  • With regard to political parties, 62% of British Jews – almost two thirds – believe that the Labour Party is too tolerant of antisemitism among its MPs, MEPs, councillors, members and supporters. This is the lowest score for Labour in years, but still puts it firmly ahead of the next parties: the SNP (47%) and the Green Party (42%).
  • 86% of British Jews are not satisfied with the BBC’s coverage of the Israel-Hamas crisis. Only 4% are satisfied.
  • A near-unanimous 97% of British Jews feel personally connected to events happening in Israel.
  • Eight in ten British Jews consider themselves to be a Zionist. Only six percent do not.

Fieldwork was conducted between 12th and 17th November 2023. In total, 3,744 responses were obtained. The full results and methodology are provided below.

Full results

“Since 7th October 2023, I am less likely to show visible signs of my Judaism when I go out, for example a Star of David or a Jewish skullcap (kippah).”

  • Strongly Agree 40%
  • Agree 29%
  • Neither Agree nor Disagree 16%
  • Disagree 9%
  • Strongly Disagree 6%

“Since 7th October 2023, I have considered leaving the UK due to antisemitism.”

  • Strongly Agree 17%
  • Agree 31%
  • Neither Agree nor Disagree 18%
  • Disagree 20%
  • Strongly Disagree 14%

Have you or someone you know experienced or witnessed an antisemitic incident since 7th October 2023

  • Yes 61%
  • No 39%

“Antisemitic hate crime is treated by the police in the same way as other forms of hate crime.”

  • Strongly Agree 5%
  • Agree 11%
  • Neither Agree nor Disagree 18%
  • Disagree 34%
  • Strongly Disagree 32%

“I would avoid travelling to a city centre if a major anti-Israel demonstration was taking place there.”

  • Strongly Agree 74%
  • Agree 16%
  • Neither Agree nor Disagree 4%
  • Disagree 4%
  • Strongly Disagree 2%

“The Crown Prosecution Service should report statistics on prosecutions of antisemitic hate crimes.”

  • Strongly Agree 70%
  • Agree 25%
  • Neither Agree nor Disagree 4%
  • Disagree 1%
  • Strongly Disagree 0%

“The British Government should proscribe Hizb ut-Tahrir.”

  • Strongly Agree 78%
  • Agree 12%
  • Neither Agree nor Disagree 9%
  • Disagree 0%
  • Strongly Disagree 0%

“Do you feel that any political parties are too tolerant of antisemitism among their MPs, MEPs, councillors, members and supporters? Please select all that apply.”

  • Conservative Party 14%
  • DUP 16%
  • Green Party 42%
  • Labour Party 62%
  • Liberal Democrats 32%
  • Plaid Cymru 21%
  • Reclaim Party 11%
  • Reform Party 12%
  • SNP 47%
  • Sinn Féin 32%
  • UKIP 16%
  • None 2%
  • Don’t know 26%

“Overall, I am satisfied with the BBC’s coverage of the Israel-Hamas crisis.”

  • Strongly Disagree 71%
  • Disagree 15%
  • Neither Agree nor Disagree 4%
  • Agree 3%
  • Strongly Agree 1%
  • I do not watch or listen to the BBC or read its website 6%

“I feel personally connected to events happening in Israel.”

  • Strongly Disagree 0%
  • Disagree 0%
  • Neither Agree nor Disagree 2%
  • Agree 19%
  • Strongly Agree 78%

“I consider myself to be a Zionist.”

  • Strongly Disagree 2%
  • Disagree 4%
  • Neither Agree nor Disagree 14%
  • Agree 23%
  • Strongly Agree 57%

Survey methodology

Our surveys of British Jews were modelled on the National Jewish Community Survey (NJCS) conducted by the Institute for Jewish Policy research. In common with the NJCS, the samples were self-selecting, and respondents were required to self-identify as Jewish and confirm that they lived in the United Kingdom. Like the NJCS, they were contacted primarily through ‘seed’ organisations, including religious bodies, Jewish online networks (including targeted advertising on social networks), and community welfare organisations, among others. In common with the NJCS, the seed organisations were used to initiate a ‘snowballing’ process which, in effect, created a non-probability convenience sample. It was not possible to use a random probability sampling approach for this study because a suitable sampling frame for the Jewish population is not available in the UK. Fieldwork was conducted between 12th and 17th November 2023. In total, 3,744 responses were obtained. As is the case with the NJCS, the number of unique respondents contacted cannot be determined due to the likely overlap between different ‘seed’ organisations’ supporter bases, thus we cannot estimate the survey response rate.

A key issue with an online survey is to ensure that respondents are not counted twice. To avoid this and other abuses that might affect the survey’s integrity, several measures were implemented. These included: carefully monitoring responses for unusual trends during the fieldwork phase, and assessing the completed dataset for the presence of extreme or unrealistic values (i.e. outlier diagnostics) and for the presence of unlikely combinations of values across variables (i.e. logical checks). Additionally, cookies were used to avoid respondents completing the survey more than once. Finally, respondents’ IP addresses were logged so that if a respondent deleted their cookies, multiple responses from the same IP address could still be identified. As a result, duplicate responses were kept to a minimum and ultimately, removed from the sample.

Our survey is modelled on best practice established by NJCS. All surveys have their shortcomings, and ours shares the shortcomings of NJCS. Even surveys that are based on probability sampling are typically affected by high levels of non- response. Surveys of populations lacking sampling frames, such as this one, are particularly challenging, as is establishing their representativeness. Nevertheless, because we have extremely high-quality baseline statistics available in the UK, it is possible to both accurately weight the data and make reasonable assumptions about where they may depart from the ‘true’ picture. In general, the survey samples reflect the diverse character of Jewish respondents in the UK across geographical, demographic and religious variables. Where the sample does depart from baseline characteristics, responses were weighted for location, gender, age and religious affiliation. Population estimates were based on responses to the 2021 Census in England and Wales and the 2022 Census in Scotland where that data is available, and otherwise on responses to the 2011 Census, and size estimates with regard to religious denominations were based on the NCJS 2013. The weights were calculated using random iterative method weighting by an external consultant.

A new survey has found that nearly one-third of Jewish students in the United States have experienced or witnessed antisemitism on campus. 

The survey showed that 14% of Jewish students had experienced antisemitism directly on campus and 16% of Jewish students had witnessed antisemitism on campus. 

The survey was conducted by Jewish on Campus, a group led by Jewish students that “seek[s] to end antisemitism on college campuses and beyond”. 

Responses in the survey also showed that 84% of Jewish students felt that antisemitism is a threat to the United States. 

In the study, 1,000 Jewish students and a further sample of 2,000 students more generally were surveyed. 

Julia Jassey, the Chief Executive Officer of Jewish on Campus, said in a statement: “As the new school year begins, these findings provide key evidence of the breadth and depth of antisemitism students face.” 

She added that universities and students should “meet this moment and take antisemitism seriously.”

Campaign Against Antisemitism reports on news and incidents relating to antisemitism throughout the United States.

As the new academic year approaches, Campaign Against Antisemitism can reveal that 43 universities in Britain have still not properly adopted, or have expressly refused to adopt, the International Definition of Antisemitism.

The number of universities that have adopted the Definition in full, including the eleven integral examples, and have not adopted any other qualifying or competing language, is 134. However, the rate of adoption is slowing, with our research indicating that the most recent adoption may have been as far back as March 2022. The latest information, which is updated in real time, can be found at antisemitism.org/universities.

Among those universities that have not adopted, some have not provided any cogent reasons, such as the University of Brighton and the University of Wales Trinity St David.

Brighton University, for example, told us: “A Race and Faith commission was set up following discussions at the Academic Board and Board of Governors on the subject of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) working definition of antisemitism. The Commission recommended that the University should not adopt the definition.”

This Commission relied on work by the UCL Academic Board, which even the UCL leadership has not followed (UCL has adopted the Definition), input from the University and College Union (UCU), which is a staunch opponent of the Definition and whose reputation in the Jewish community is in the gutter, and Prof. David Feldman, a former Deputy Chair of the whitewash Chakrabarti Inquiry into antisemitism in the Labour Party and whose advocacy against the Definition has been grossly counter-productive to the fight against antisemitism.

Some universities claimed that, while they have not adopted the Definition, they nonetheless ‘use’ it, including Cardiff University, Edinburgh Napier University and the University of South Wales.

Others insisted that their existing policies already cover antisemitism and therefore adoption is not necessary, such as Kingston University, Robert Gordon University and SOAS University of London.

SOAS, for example, told us: “While SOAS University of London has not adopted the IHRA definition, we stand firmly against antisemitism, as we do against all forms of discrimination. Our SOAS Charter on Racism, Antisemitism and All Forms of Cultural, Ethnic and Religious Chauvinism makes a clear, demonstrable commitment to every member of staff and every student that we will not tolerate any form of racism or religious chauvinism, and that we will maintain an inclusive space for every member of our community.”

Readers will draw their own conclusions as to the strength of SOAS’s commitment to standing against antisemitism, in light of its appalling record.

Some universities have not adopted the Definition, because it does not cover all faith groups. These include Ravensbourne University London, Swansea University and the University for the Creative Arts.

The University of St Andrews has decided not to adopt the Definition because it believes that it is polarising to adopt only this definition of antisemitism. The University of Greenwich has gone further, adopting both the Definition and the Jerusalem Declaration on Antisemitism. The Jerusalem Declaration is a wrecking document intended to undermine the globally-recognised Definition. Any university that has adopted it alongside the Definition or an amended version of the Definition (for example by omitting the eleven integral examples), such as Greenwich University or Goldsmiths, University of London, cannot be said to have adopted the Definition. Campaign Against Antisemitism recently submitted evidence to an inquiry into antisemitism at Goldsmiths.

The arguments that these universities have deployed to justify their failure to adopt the Definition do not hold water. Those that claim that their existing policies render the Definition unnecessary misunderstand its purpose: the Definition is not a policy on antisemitism but a definition of antisemitism. Existing policies can detail how antisemitism is treated; they cannot identify it. For that, the Definition is needed.

The claim, meanwhile, that the Definition can have a “chilling effect” on freedom of expression or inhibits criticism of Israel are also baseless canards. The Definition, which is context-specific, states clearly that “criticism of Israel similar to that levelled against any other country cannot be regarded as antisemitic.” Moreover, as Campaign Against Antisemitism has shown, the Definition does not at all conflict with freedom of expression under law, and indeed a 2023 report into antisemitism in higher education found that, of 56 universities asked, none knew of a single example in which their adoption of the Definition had in any way restricted or chilled freedom of expression or academic research.

These excuses are wearing thin, particularly as antisemitism on campuses is rising. CST reported at the beginning of this year that there has been a 22% increase in university-related reported antisemitic hate incidents over the past two academic years, while polling conducted in 2021 by Campaign Against Antisemitism showed that 92% of British Jews believe that antisemitism in British universities is a problem.

A spokesperson for Campaign Against Antisemitism said: “We commend the vast majority of British universities that have chosen to show solidarity with Jewish students and do their part in the fight against anti-Jewish racism by adopting the International Definition of Antisemitism. It is appalling that a minority of universities continue to take the opposite course, and it is astonishing that they persist in providing excuses that have already been debunked years ago. These universities are bowing to pressure by those who either fail to appreciate the gravity of contemporary antisemitism or do not have the interests of British Jews at heart. It is cowardly. They must urgently revisit their positions.”

Campaign Against Antisemitism will continue to monitor the adoption of the International Definition of Antisemitism by universities.

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]