The Union of Jewish Students welcomes the University of Essex Vice-Chancellor’s condemnation of antisemitism. We commend the swift, strong and supportive action taken, including suspension of the staff member in question and a full investigation. We look forward to seeing the progress of a review into support for Jewish students and staff. Assurances of the establishment of a Jewish society regardless of the vote are most welcome.
We applaud the University’s adoption of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance definition of antisemitism as the most useful and accurate way to define and therefore fight racism against Jewish people. We expect other universities will follow this example and the example of the Office for Students in acknowledging IHRA as the definition supported by the overwhelming majority of the Jewish community.
There is certainly still a long way to go until antisemitism is eradicated from University campuses, but we are heartened that these steps will make a significant impact on improving the lives of Jewish students at Essex University.