National campaign against anti-Semitism launched in UK
Running for two weeks, including over Holocaust Memorial Day next week, the striking digital billboards will be seen right across the country, including in prominent locations in London, Birmingham, Manchester, Edinburgh, Glasgow and other major cities.
The billboards call on people to stand with the Jewish community by using the #StandWithJews hashtag on social media. Members of the Jewish community will highlight their own experiences of antisemitism using the #BecauseImJewish hashtag.
“People are utterly appalled when we tell them quite how much Jews are targeted by hate crime," Gideon Falter, chief executive of Campaign Against Antisemitism said. "The UK is a fundamentally decent and tolerant place and one of the best countries in the world to live as a Jew, but we still suffer racism and attacks every day simply because we are Jewish." Jews make up barely 0.5% of the national population in the UK "and the solidarity of good people who are willing to stand up to hatred and Stand with Jews means a great deal to our community and shows the racists that they cannot win,” Falter said.
The billboards challenge preconceptions and prejudices about what it means to ‘look Jewish’ with the models reflecting the diverse backgrounds of Britain’s Jewish community.
According to the CAA, "all of the Jewish models who appear on the billboards might be targeted for any of the protected characteristics that they possess, or may appear to possess, but what all the models share is that they, like all British Jews, are on average 500% more likely to be the target of a hate crime because they are Jewish, compared to any other faith group."
The models include a Holocaust survivor who has been left sickened by the targeting of Jews in modern-day Britain, recent immigrants to the UK and it is believed for the first time ever, on a British billboard, a member of the Haredi (ultra-Orthodox) Jewish community, which bears so much of the brunt of violent antisemitic crime.