Spray-painted swastikas on the doors of the Machzikei Hadas synagogue in Ottawa
Dec. 13, 2018
By Daniel Koren
Manager, Media Relations & Communications
B'nai Brith Canada
OTTAWA – B’nai Brith Canada is continuing its push for municipal, provincial and federal governments to adopt the measures listed in its Eight-Point Plan to Tackle Antisemitism, including that Canada adopt a national action plan to combat antisemitism, that dedicated hate crimes units are instituted in every major Canadian city, and developing an action plan to counter online hate.
Last week, the organization took part in consultations with the Department of Canadian Heritage to develop a Canadian anti-racism strategy with Minister Pablo Rodriguez. Brian Herman, Director of Government Relations, represented B’nai Brith and spoke to the need of implementing an anti-hate strategy and adopting a uniform definition of a hate incident (including for antisemitic hate incidents).
In its written submission, B’nai Brith made the following suggestions to Minister Rodriguez:
- Antisemitism is a form of bias and hatred that must be addressed through a national effort. As Jews remain the most targeted religious community in Canada for hate crimes, Canada must implement a national action plan to combat antisemitism.
- Canada must put in place an anti-bias or anti-hate strategy to deal with the challenges of racism, religious hatred and discrimination, and xenophobia.
- Because data drives policy, Canada must adopt an accepted definition of an antisemitic hate incident to capture an accurate portrait of antisemitism in Canada that goes beyond police-reported hate crimes.
- There must be better training for law enforcement officers on how to recognize antisemitic hate incidents or hate crimes.
- Canada must create greater awareness of the definition of antisemitism embraced by the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA).
To read B'nai Brith's submission in full, click here.
B’nai Brith will continue to make recommendations to all levels of government, police services and fellow nonprofit organizations on how to better address the issues of hatred and discrimination in Canada.
“When it comes to online hate, we have written Ministers with specific ideas on how to better combat it, including the concept of trusted flaggers, recognized organizations that can be validated and trusted in advance in the campaign to take hate offline,” said Herman.