HomeLocalLocal NewsManitoba adopts IHRA definition of antisemitism

Manitoba adopts IHRA definition of antisemitism

The Jewish Federation of Winnipeg applauds the adoption of framework to identify, understand, and combat antisemitism 
Submitted by the Jewish Federation of Winnipeg: 
October 27, 2022 Manitoba became the sixth Canadian province to adopt the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) working definition of antisemitism.

The IHRA working definition of antisemitism provides policymakers, law enforcement, and community leaders a tool to identify, understand, and combat contemporary forms of antisemitism in public life, the media, schools, the workplace, and in the religious sphere. IHRA is the consensus definition of antisemitism that best reflects lived experience of Jews today. Developed by IHRA’s Committee on Antisemitism and Holocaust Denial, it is grounded in the research of the world’s foremost experts on antisemitism and the Holocaust and is supported by the United Nations, European Union, and 30 countries including Israel, US, and Canada. It has also been adopted by Ontario, British Columbia, Quebec, Alberta, and New Brunswick.

“Our government is proud to stand united with the Jewish community here in Manitoba and around the world,” said The Honourable Heather Stefanson, Premier of Manitoba. “Antisemitism has no place in our communities and today is an important step forward in our collective commitment to ensure we build an inclusive and safe society, and a future full of hope and opportunity for our future generations.”

As antisemitic incidents in Canada continue to rise, the need to counter them is urgent. The IHRA definition provides a critical framework to guide officials in addressing this rise in hate and discrimination. Its adoption signals that the Government of Manitoba recognizes the struggle faced by the Jewish community and that they stand in solidarity in the fight against Jew-hatred and all forms of hate. As the representative body of Manitoba’s Jewish community, advocating for the definition’s adoption was of paramount importance for the Jewish Federation of Winnipeg.

“Today, Premier Stefanson and the Government of Manitoba sent a strong message that antisemitism has no place in society,” said Gustavo Zentner, President of the Jewish Federation of Winnipeg. “To combat antisemitism effectively, it must first be defined. The IHRA definition will help Manitobans identify and combat antisemitism in all its forms. With antisemitic hate crimes on the rise across the country, fighting antisemitism is a priority – not just for the Jewish community, but for all Manitobans and for all Canadians.”

While details of the rollout and adoption of the IHRA definition in various applications have yet to be formalized by the government, the community is encouraged that, through IHRA, Jewish-lived experience will now be reflected in the official understanding of antisemitism.

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