Prime Minister Theresa May calls on UK universities to confront Antisemitism

By March 02 2017, 13:05 Latest News No Comments

Theresa May PMQsPrime Minister Theresa May called on UK universities to take “robust” action against Antisemitism and ensure that all Antisemitic incidents are investigated “swiftly”,  in response to a question from Bob Blackman MP during Prime Minister’s Questions this week.

Prime Minister May referred to Universities Minister Jo Johnson’s letter to universities last week where he set out the obligation of all UK higher education institutions to tackle antisemitism on campus in compliance with the law and Government’s adoption of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance definition of Antisemitism, particularly in the context of ‘Israel Apartheid Week’.

The Prime Minister responded to a question by CFI Officer and Harrow East MP Bob Blackman, who called on the Government to ensure that Antisemitism does not flourish on campuses, in light of ‘Israel Apartheid Week’.

Mr Blackman said: “We are rightly proud that young people can study at our colleges and universities regardless of race, creed or colour, yet this week Jewish students are being subjected to intimidation, fear and anti-Semitism as the result of the so-called Israeli ‘Apartheid Week’.

He asked Prime Minister May: “What action can my right hon. Friend take to make sure that chancellors and principals ensure that Antisemitism is not allowed to prosper on campuses?”

Prime Minister Theresa May underlined in her response: “First, I want to assure my hon. Friend that higher education institutions have a responsibility to ensure that they provide a safe and inclusive environment for all students”.

She said: “We expect them to have robust policies and procedures in place to comply with the law, and to investigate and swiftly address hate crime, including any anti-Semitic incidents that are reported”.

Referring to Universities Minister Jo Johnson’s letter to universities last week, the Prime Minister added: “I know that my hon. Friend the Minister for Universities, Science, Research and Innovation has recently written to remind institutions of these expectations, and he has also urged them to follow the Government’s lead in adopting the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance definition of Antisemitism”.

Click here to read the full exchange.

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