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BOARD OF DEPUTIES OF BRITISH JEWS ADVOCACY FOR THE COMMUNITY  
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Board of Deputies President tells Holocaust Centre inquiry: ‘Memorial next to Westminster will be uniquely powerful'
 
Board of Deputies of British Jews President Marie van der Zyl today made a statement to the Holocaust Memorial public inquiry in which she said that “there is something uniquely powerful in locating a memorial and learning centre to humankind’s greatest crime right next to the centre of the UK’s democracy in Westminster".
 
She said: “Crucially, it will give a voice to those who cannot speak out about what they endured. The diminishing group of Holocaust survivors have themselves said how important it is to have a memorial on a specific and important site.
 
She added that while Britain has a mixed record in its response to the Nazis’ attempted genocide, the memorial and learning centre would “recognise this duality”.
 
This will not be a memorial which will only be relevant to Jews, she said. “It will provide a stark lesson about the horrors of racism and persecution have been high on the news agenda too: whether it be the systemic racism that Black people suffer on both sides of the Atlantic, or the state-backed persecution of the Uyhgurs in China.”
 
While it could be a target for terrorists, this should not deter those responsible for building the memorial and learning centre. “I reflect that the UK Jewish community has painfully learned over the past 50 years, schools and synagogues need to be protected against those who would do us harm. What we have not done, however, is to close down those centres of prayer and Jewish learning. We have carried on, proudly, as British Jews.”
 
Read the full text of the statement here.
 
Jewish community leaders thank Keir Starmer for firm and constructive response to damning EHRC verdict 
Marie van der Zyl, President of the Board of Deputies, Jonathan Goldstein, Chair of the Jewish Leadership Council, Mark Gardner, Chief Executive of the Community Security Trust and Mike Katz, Chair of the Jewish Labour Movement, held an online meeting with Labour Leader Keir Starmer this week.

They said: “We thanked Keir Starmer and the Labour Party for their firm and constructive response to the damning verdict delivered by the Equality and Human Rights Commission last week.
 
“We expressed our disgust that his predecessor Jeremy Corbyn had, by contrast, responded by diminishing and dismissing the legal findings of the report, thereby challenging the Labour Party’s new commitment to rooting out the problem and giving the Party no choice but to suspend him.
 
“While we discussed a constructive means of Labour delivering the technical recommendations of the EHRC report, a crucial element of the way forward is about culture.
 
“Those who are responsible for obstructing the new, positive direction set for the Party around antisemitism and undermining the confidence of the Jewish community and  Jewish Labour Party members are part of the problem and the Labour leadership will need to find a way to put a stop to it. 
 
“Calls for leniency on the basis of party unity are misplaced when the issue at hand is antisemitism. If the Party is to show zero tolerance to antisemitism, there can be no unity with antisemites or their enablers. Indeed, the EHRC rightly dismissed such political considerations as being inappropriate for an issue in which Labour has moral and legal responsibilities.
 
“Recognising the progress made, but that there is still a long way to go, we expressed our ongoing willingness to work with Keir Starmer and Labour to return the Party to being proudly and unequivocally anti-racist once more.”

Read the JC report here and the Jewish News story here
 
To celebrate its 260th anniversary on 3 November, the Board of Deputies held an online L'Chaim for all Deputies and staff. Efrat Sopher, one of our newest Deputies representing the oldest constituencies - the S&P Sephardi Community - presented the Board with an antique print showing the travels of long-time President Sir Moses Montefiore. Efrat said: "We are standing together with the Board of Deputies today, after all these years, because we’ve acted with wisdom, prudence and care for the values and for the people whom we serve. We look forward to continuing to do so together in the future." President Marie van der Zyl sent this message to all Deputies.
 
Join the Board of Deputies for an #InterfaithWeek discussion on how people of faith can navigate questions of race and identity in Britain in 2020. Watch LIVE on our website or on our Facebook and YouTube pages, no need to register. Post your questions for the panel in comments. With: Rev Celia Apeagyei-Collins - Christian Pastor and Founder of Rehoboth Foundation; Cllr Awale Olad - Camden Councillor and Somali Muslim; Jodeci Joseph - Black-Jewish Motivational Speaker. Chaired by Stephen Bush - Chair of Commission on Racial Inclusivity in the Jewish Community and Political Editor of the New Statesman
 
 
 
ACTIVITY REPORT
 
 
ARCHIVES AND HERITAGE
Archives and Heritage Manager Dawn Waterman presented at an event, held by the Insiders/Outsiders festival, entitled Hidden Treasures: World War Two Internment Archives on the Isle of Man. Dawn introduced the Board of Deputies’ Hidden Treasures project and drew attention to the many participating archives that hold material telling the story of Jewish internees; the Association of Jewish Refugees’ Refugee Voices, Tate Britain, The Wiener Holocaust Library, the Imperial War Museum and The National Archives as well as, of course, Manx National Heritage. Yvonne Cresswell, of Manx National Heritage on the Isle of Man, gave a fascinating presentation on their collection of material on the internment of civilians, many of them Jewish, during the First and Second World Wars. The session will be available on You Tube.
THE BODCAST
Join the Board of Deputies for an #InterfaithWeek discussion entitled Realising Religious Freedom around the Globe, on Tuesday10 November, 6:00pm – 7:00pm'. Watch LIVE on our website or on our Facebook and YouTube pages, no need to register. Post your questions for the panel in comments. With: Kiri Kankhwende - Press and Public Affairs Team Leader, Christian Solidarity Worldwide; Padideh Sabeti - Director, Office of Public Affairs of the UK Bahá'í Community; Board of Deputies Vice President Edwin Shuker; Nury Turkel - Attorney and Commissioner, U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom. Chaired by Board of Deputies Chief Executive Gillian Merron.
INTERNATIONAL
Public Affairs Director Phil Rosenberg, Government, Regional and Religious Affairs Officer Daniel Elton and International Relations Officer Talia Ingleby held a catch-up call with Luke Akehurst, Director of We Believe in Israel to discuss priorities of Israel advocacy and collaboration opportunities. 
 
International Relations Officer Talia Ingleby spoke with Leon Saltiel, Representative at UN Geneva and UNESCO and Coordinator on Countering Antisemitism for the World Jewish Congress, about anti-Israel bias at the UN and tackling antisemitism. 
COMMUNITY
Chief Executive Gillian Merron convened and chaired a meeting of the Board of Deputies CEO Forum. The CEOs heard from guest speaker Stephen Bush, Chair of the Board of Deputies' Commission on Racial Inclusivity in the Jewish Community. Rachel Century, Head of Outreach at the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust, gave a presentation on ‘Wellbeing In Our Teams’. The event was attended by CEOs from 55 communal organisations.

Regional Coronavirus Advice Capacity Help (Co-Ach) Manager Sara Radivan met Edward Green and Hilary Rifkind, Deputy and Chair of Edinburgh Hebrew Congregation, to discuss further Deputy engagement and future work together. 
 
Regional Coronavirus Advice Capacity Help (Co-Ach) Manager Sara Radivan met Phil Diamon and Joshua Simons, Deputy and Chair of Shenley United Synagogue, to discuss further Deputy engagement and future work together.
 
The Community Engagement Team of  Director of Operations Judy Silkoff, Regional Coronavirus Advice Capacity Help (Co-Ach) Manager Sara Radivan, Community Engagement Officer Lauren Keiles and Archives and Heritage Manager Dawn Waterman welcomed 40 Deputies to a Coffee Break. 
 
Regional Coronavirus Advice Capacity Help (Co-Ach) Manager Sara Radivan met Leon Smith and David Turns, Deputy and President of Bristol Hebrew Congregation.
EDUCATION
Senior Vice President Sheila Gewolb made a Judaism Talking Heads video recording as part of Cumbria SACRE’s virtual teaching resource for primary schools which features representatives of different faiths.  
 
 
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