A new British report on antisemitism on university campuses found that Jewish students overwhelmingly have an “underlying fear of being targeted” over their religious identity, the UK Jewish News reported.
The report by the British parliament’s Taskforce on Antisemitism in Higher Education also noted that it is common for Jewish students to refrain from wearing “certain clothing or jewlery around campus because it would make them visibly identifiable as Jewish.”
A significant number of young Jews also admitted they were concerned about going to seminars or lectures about Israel or Israel-related issues “for fear of personal interrogation.”
The task force was created by Lord Mann, the government’s Independent Adviser on Antisemitism, along with the All-Party Parliamentary Group Against Antisemitism.
The task force also said they were surprised to find out that it was common for higher education workers to keep their Jewish identity secret to avoid “negativity” from other employees.
The panel met with over 50 higher education institutions, Jewish students and other community members in an effort to learn about the experiences of Jewish students and staff on university campuses.
The report concluded that while Jewish students “generally have a positive university experience” there has been a significant increase in incidents “relating to Zionism or Israel.”
It recommended adopting the IHRA working definition of antisemitism into higher education institutions' regulations in order to build trust between Jewish students and staff and their universities.