Business Secretary, Rt. Hon. Sajid Javid MP, yesterday pledged to continue to speak out against anti-Semitism “until Britain wakes up to this noxious weed that has taken root”, at a fundraising lunch hosted by the Community Security Trust (CST).
He applauded the work of the CST in protecting the Jewish community, but stated: “I don’t want it to be necessary. I don’t want to have to talk about funding for fences and cameras and security guards”.
Mr Javid referred to his speech at the Holocaust Educational Trust dinner last month, in which he spoke of the different faces of anti-Semitism, and the reaction to his identification of “dinner party anti-Semites”.
He said: “I found the reaction to the speech quite interesting. Because on the night quite a few people popped up on the internet to say ‘don’t be silly Sajid, of course that’s not a thing. I go to lots of dinner parties and nobody ever abuses Jewish people…’ In the days that followed, [there] came a second wave of comment, from Britain’s Jews. And it was almost unanimous in saying “finally, someone’s put a name to what I’ve been experiencing for years”.
Mr Javid emphasised the importance of eradicating the normalised anti-Semitism that goes unchecked, and went on to focus his speech on business and the contribution of the Jewish community to the economy.
He thanked the room of businessmen and women for their help in driving economic recovery: “Thank you for creating jobs, taking on apprentices, delivering the growth that benefits us all”.
He concluded by thanking those in attendance for supporting the CST: “I know for a fact that, as long as the Trust’s work is necessary, it will have generous friends in the world of business. And let me be very clear that, as long as the fight against anti-Semitism continues, you will also have a friend in me”.