Holocaust Memorial Day (HMD) is a time to remember the 6 million Jews murdered during the Holocaust, alongside the millions of people murdered under Nazi persecution of other groups and during more recent genocides.
HMD is a time for bringing communities together in collective remembrance of the millions of people persecuted and killed for who they were, and in so doing, to learn the lessons of the past and stand up to hatred, bigotry, and racism wherever we find it today.
HMD is a day that brings people from all different backgrounds together to remember our shared humanity.
This year’s theme is the Fragility of Freedom and the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust explores this theme in depth:
“On HMD 2024, we can all reflect on how freedom is fragile and vulnerable to abuse. As we come together in communities around the UK, let’s pledge not to take our freedoms for granted, and consider what we can do to strengthen freedoms around the world.”
Last year it was sobering to hear the Metropolitan Police Service say that hate crimes against Jewish people have increased by 1,350% in London. The rise in antisemitism has continued – last week three people were attacked in Leicester Square “for being Jewish” after they were overheard “speaking Hebrew”. SWU has also heard from Jewish members of our social work community about the painful impact antisemitism is having on their communities across the UK.
SWU Chair Dave Callow said, “Thank you to the Jewish social workers who have recently shared their perspectives and experiences with SWU. I am grateful that members of our social work community have reached out to let us know that they are not feeling supported – both within the social work profession and the trade unionist movement – and have given the union an opportunity to listen and reflect on how to become better allies. There is no room for antisemitism in our society and the union is committed to continuing to develop partnerships with the Jewish community, promote a culture of inclusion, and engage in active allyship.”