Anti-semitic hate crime rises in Greater Manchester by nearly a third

Video report by Granda Reports correspondent Elaine Willcox

Jewish people are facing anti-Semitic abuse from children as young as six, according to a Rabbi.

It has become so bad some schools in Greater Manchester are also having to employ security to protect children after receiving bomb threats.

New data shows Greater Manchester is a hotspot for anti-Jewish hate crime, up 29% in the first six months of 2023 on the same time in 2022.

  • Granada Reports correspondent Elaine Willcox spoke to Rabbi Arnold Saunders

Rabbi Arnold Saunders says he has been called a "dirty Jew" by children as young as six and seven.

He added: "They got that from somewhere and it's not the television. It's either home or school.

Rabbi Saunders is also a Conservative councillor for the Salford ward of Kersal and Broughton.

More than 40% of the people who live in the ward are Jewish, making it one of the largest communities in the country, but he says he still experiences frequent abuse.

He said: "Past incidents have ranged from being punched full on in the face. Someone said to me 'I'm going to kill you Jew'."

The Salford Councillor has long spoken of the antisemitism he has faced. Credit: MEN Media

Mum-of-four Maz Chrysler says Jewish families have no option to pay for security guards at school to keep her children safe.

"I grew up in Israel where there's a really big safety element of wars going on," she said.

"So I was always aware of that in the background. I never would have thought moving to England I would have had that same experience with my children."

There were 132 anti-semitic incidents in the area in the six months to June 2023, an increase of 29% on the same period in 2022.

Mum-of-four Maz Chrysler says her children's school requires security to keep them safe. Credit: ITV Granada

The figures are part of a report by the Community Security Trust, a charity aiming to protect the Jewish community from abuse.

The report says London and Greater Manchester are the regions of the country where incidents are most likely to happen, with 72% of all hate crimes in the UK recorded in these two areas.

Its authors say this reinforces the fact that anti-semitism in the UK is most concentrated in the areas that are home to the largest and most visible Jewish populations.

Liverpool had nine incidents of anti-semitic abuse putting it among the top 10 of other areas of the country.

There was a big rise in the number of hate crimes recorded from online sources, up 37% from 153 in the first six months of 2022 to 210 from January to June in 2023.

Marc Levey, Chief Executive of the Jewish Representative Counci says Twitter is not doing enough to stop conspiracy theories online. Credit: ITV Granada

The report points to the takeover of Twitter by Elon Musk adding: "Its policies for dealing with harmful content have also changed and the data in our report suggests that their new approach to limiting the visibility of antisemitic tweets is not working.

"Anti-semitic content on Twitter is more likely to include extremist discourse and ideology, or conspiracy theories and stereotypes about Jews, than the antisemitism found on other platforms."

Marc Levey, Chief Executive of the Jewish Representative Council said: "Posts on Twitter around Holocaust denial or conspiracy theories that are particularly damaging can lead to people being radicalised in their bedroom.

"Social media companies need to be doing far more to take down that material and stop it being circulated into wider public."

Granada Reports has contacted Twitter for comment.

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