(September 23, 2018 / JNS) Due to rising anti-Semitism in the United Kingdom, 40 percent of British Jews have considered leaving the country, up from 31 percent in 2017. With 90 percent of British Jews citing issues associated with the Labour Party, many of them acknowledged considering or taking concrete measures to emigrate.
According to the annual Antisemitism Barometer study by the Campaign Against Antisemitism, a nonprofit organization that fights anti-Semitism, 82 percent of the 2,103 respondents said politicians were “doing too little to fight anti-Semitism,” and 84 percent blamed the uptick in anti-Semitism on “recent political events.”
Just 22 percent of British Jews say they currently feel welcome in Great Britain, and 49 percent believe that Jews have a longterm future in the United Kingdom, a decrease from 59 percent in 2017 and 62 percent in 2016, which is when the Labour Party’s anti-Semitism crisis surfaced.
“Most British Jews who would ordinarily wear Jewish clothing and symbols said that they now conceal them when out in public,” the Campaign Against Antisemitism said in a statement. “British Jews also revealed that now they felt more threatened by the far-left than by the far-right.”
“It is clear that the current political climate has created an environment in which many have British Jews have considered leaving and some have even begun to take concrete steps to leave. Britain is our home, and for decades, it has been one of the best places in the world to be Jewish, but that is no longer assured,” said Campaign Against Antisemitism chairman Gideon Falter. “Now British Jews live in fear of the institutionally anti-Semitic Labour Party and its anti-Semitic leader [Jeremy Corbyn] coming to power. Once a community starts to take flight, it becomes almost impossible to remedy the situation.”
Falter added that “this polling shows that we are now at the 11th hour: Many British Jews are mentally, if not physically, packing their bags.”