Audit of Local Authorities

Campaign Against Antisemitism monitors local authorities’ responses to antisemitism by sending hundreds of requests under freedom of information laws. We check for adoption of the International Definition of Antisemitism and how each local authority tackles antisemitism when it arises. We publish most of the information that we gather so that people around the UK can review the performance of their local authorities and hold them to account.


of local authorities in the UK have adopted the Definition


local authorities changed or omitted part of the Definition when adopting it


of local authorities that have fully adopted the Definition are in England

The first edition of the Audit of Local Authorities was published on 24th August 2020, including new data from hundreds of requests under freedom of information laws. You can read the foreword below, or download the full report.


The campaign for widespread adoption of the International Definition of Antisemitism is well underway. Ever since Campaign Against Antisemitism led the effort for adoption of the Definition by the British Government – which became the first in the world to do so – two Secretaries of State for Local Government have joined our push for local authorities to follow suit.

As this first-of-its-kind report shows, that campaign is yielding results, with much success owed to the work of grassroots local activists and organisations right across the UK. We applaud them and the local authorities that have listened, but there remains much to do.

The current Secretary of State for Local Government, the Rt. Hon. Robert Jenrick MP, recently warned local authorities that those refusing to adopt the Definition would risk losing public funding. This report examines where pressure is needed by naming and shaming for the first time those local authorities that have failed to adopt the full Definition in line with Government policy.

The report gives a fuller picture of the fight against antisemitism at the local level, exposing which local authorities take this issue seriously and which do not, and enabling local activists and voters to make informed choices.

This brings us to the bad news, which is that there is still a long way to go. While the number of local authorities adopting the full Definition is encouraging, in total fewer than a third of local authorities have adopted the full Definition so far. With some exceptions, which the report analyses, this failure is national and cross-party.
The purpose of adoption of the full Definition is not only to send a message of where local councillors stand on antisemitism but also to ensure that the Definition is applied in disciplinary cases involving councillors or staff. As this report shows, the number of local authorities that have actually incorporated the Definition into their codes of conduct for councillors and staff is negligible.

The report also discusses the shortcomings of the existing disciplinary and sanctions systems in place for dealing with misconduct by local councillors. Adoption of the Definition and its incorporation into codes of conduct are still insufficient if appropriate sanctions are unavailable and local councillors can engage in antisemitic conduct without consequence.

A separate Campaign Against Antisemitism project exposing antisemitism in political parties has shown just how extensive antisemitism is among local councillors and council candidates. Adopting and applying the Definition in antisemitism cases and enforcing judgments with real sanctions are critical if anti-Jewish hatred is to be eradicated from local politics in the UK.

British Jews should not have to endure antisemitism from their elected representatives, and all opponents of racism in our country should root out prejudice at any level of our politics. It is easy to say that antisemitism is unacceptable, but words must be followed by action. Widespread adoption of the Definition is the bare minimum.

Full Report

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The Audit of Local Authorities is conducted by making requests to local authorities under freedom of information legislation. As explained in the report, some local authorities updated their policies after sending us their freedom of information responses, including the following local authorities. This list of updates is maintained on an ongoing basis as local authorities change their policies. These changes will be reflected in the next edition of the report.

Adur and Worthing Councils
Ashfield District Council
Barnsley Metropolitan Borough Council
Barrow in Furness Borough Council
Bedford Borough Council
Breckland District Council
Calderdale Metropolitan Borough Council Cheltenham Borough Council
Cambridgeshire County Council
Chesterfield Borough Council
Chichester District Council
City of Lincoln Council
Doncaster Metropolitan Borough Council
Dorset Council
East Cambridgeshire District Council
East Hertfordshire District Council
East Lindsey District Council
East Riding of Yorkshire Council
East Staffordshire Borough Council
Elmbridge Borough Council
Epping Forest District Council

Fylde Borough Council
Gloucestershire County Council
Gravesham Borough Council
Harrogate Borough Council
Hastings Borough Council
Hertfordshire County Council
Leicestershire County Council
Lincolnshire County Council
Melton Borough Council
Mendip District Council
Mid Sussex District Council
Northern Ireland Assembly
New Forest District Council
Newark and Sherwood District Council
North East Combined Authority
North West Leicestershire District Council
Rushmoor Borough Council
Solihull Metropolitan Borough Council
South Cambridgeshire District Council
South Hams District Council
South Kesteven District Council

Scarborough Borough Council
South Oxfordshire District Council
Slough Borough Council
Staffordshire County Council
Staffordshire Moorlands District Council
Stroud District Council
Surrey County Council
Surrey Heath Borough Council
Tamworth Borough Council
Thanet District Council
Three Rivers District Council
Uttlesford District Council
Vale of White Horse District Council
Warwick District Council
West Devon Borough Council
West Lindsey District Council
West Lothian Council
West Midlands Combined Authority
West Suffolk District Council
Wokingham Borough Council
Worcester City Council
Wyre Borough Council