Hon. Jerahmiel S. Grafstein, pursuant to notice of March 11, 2009, moved:
That the Senate endorse the following Declaration, adopted by the Conference on Combating Antisemitism, held at London, United Kingdom, from February 15 to 17, 2009:
THE LONDON DECLARATION ON COMBATING ANTISEMITISM
We, Representatives of our respective Parliaments from across the world, convening in London for the founding Conference and Summit of the Inter-parliamentary Coalition for Combating Antisemitism, draw the democratic world’s attention to the resurgence of antisemitism as a potent force in politics, international affairs and society.
We note the dramatic increase in recorded antisemitic hate crimes and attacks targeting Jewish persons and property, and Jewish religious, educational and communal institutions.
We are alarmed at the resurrection of the old language of prejudice and its modern manifestations — in rhetoric and political action — against Jews, Jewish belief and practice and the State of Israel.
We are alarmed by Government-backed antisemitism in general, and state-backed genocidal antisemitism, in particular.
We, as Parliamentarians, affirm our commitment to a comprehensive programme of action to meet this challenge.
We call upon national governments, parliaments, international institutions, political and civic leaders, NGOs, and civil society to affirm democratic and human values, build societies based on respect and citizenship and combat any manifestations of antisemitism and discrimination.
We today in London resolve that;
1. Parliamentarians shall expose, challenge, and isolate political actors who engage in hate against Jews and target the State of Israel as a Jewish collectivity;
2. Parliamentarians should speak out against antisemitism and discrimination directed against any minority, and guard against equivocation, hesitation and justification in the face of expressions of hatred;
3. Governments must challenge any foreign leader, politician or public figure who denies, denigrates or trivialises the Holocaust and must encourage civil society to be vigilant to this phenomenon and to openly condemn it;
4. Parliamentarians should campaign for their Government to uphold international commitments on combating antisemitism — including the OSCE Berlin Declaration and its eight main principles;
5. The UN should reaffirm its call for every member state to commit itself to the principles laid out in the Holocaust Remembrance initiative including specific and targeted policies to eradicate Holocaust denial and trivialisation;
6. Governments and the UN should resolve that never again will the institutions of the international community and the dialogue of nation states be abused to try to establish any legitimacy for antisemitism, including the singling out of Israel for discriminatory treatment in the international arena, and we will never witness — or be party to — another gathering like Durban in 2001;
7. The OSCE should encourage its member states to fulfil their commitments under the 2004 Berlin Declaration and to fully utilise programmes to combat antisemitism including the Law Enforcement programme LEOP;
8. The European Union, inter-state institutions and multilateral fora and religious communities must make a concerted effort to combat antisemitism and lead their member states to adopt proven and best practice methods of countering antisemitism;
9. Leaders of all religious faiths should be called upon to use all the means possible to combat antisemitism and all types of discriminatory hostilities among believers and society at large;
10. The EU Council of Ministers should convene a session on combating antisemitism relying on the outcomes of the London Conference on Combating Antisemitism and using the London Declaration as a basis.
11. Governments should take appropriate and necessary action to prevent the broadcast of explicitly antisemitic programmes on satellite television channels, and to apply pressure on the host broadcast nation to take action to prevent the transmission of explicitly antisemitic programmes;
12. Governments should fully reaffirm and actively uphold the Genocide Convention, recognising that where there is incitement to genocide signatories automatically have an obligation to act. This may include sanctions against countries involved in or threatening to commit genocide or referral of the matter to the UN Security Council or initiate an inter-state complaint at the International Court of Justice;
13. Parliamentarians should legislate effective Hate Crime legislation recognising "hate aggravated crimes" and, where consistent with local legal standards, "incitement to hatred" offences and empower law enforcement agencies to convict;
14. Governments that are signatories to the Hate Speech Protocol of the Council of Europe ‘Convention on Cybercrime’ (and the ‘Additional Protocol to the Convention on cybercrime, concerning the criminalisation of acts of a racist and xenophobic nature committed through computer systems’) should enact domestic enabling legislation;
Identifying the threat
15. Parliamentarians should return to their legislature, Parliament or Assembly and establish inquiry scrutiny panels that are tasked with determining the existing nature and state of antisemitism in their countries and developing recommendations for government and civil society action;
16. Parliamentarians should engage with their governments in order to measure the effectiveness of existing policies and mechanisms in place and to recommend proven and best practice methods of countering antisemitism;
17. Governments should ensure they have publicly accessible incident reporting systems, and that statistics collected on antisemitism should be the subject of regular review and action by government and state prosecutors and that an adequate legislative framework is in place to tackle hate crime.
18. Governments must expand the use of the EUMC ‘working definition’ of antisemitism to inform policy of national and international organisations and as a basis for training material for use by Criminal Justice Agencies;
19. Police services should record allegations of hate crimes and incidents — including antisemitism — as routine part of reporting crimes;
20. The OSCE should work with member states to seek consistent data collection systems for antisemitism and hate crime.
Education, awareness and training
21. Governments should train Police, prosecutors and judges comprehensively. The training is essential if perpetrators of antisemitic hate crime are to be successfully apprehended, prosecuted, convicted and sentenced. The OSCE’s Law enforcement Programme LEOP is a model initiative consisting of an international cadre of expert police officers training police in several countries;
22. Governments should develop teaching materials on the subjects of the Holocaust, racism, antisemitism and discrimination which are incorporated into the national school curriculum. All teaching materials ought to be based on values of comprehensiveness, inclusiveness, acceptance and respect and should be designed to assist students to recognise and counter antisemitism and all forms of hate speech;
23. The OSCE should encourage their member states to fulfill their commitments under the 2004 Berlin Declaration and to fully utilise programmes to combat antisemitism including the Law Enforcement programme LEOP;
24. Governments should include a comprehensive training programme across the Criminal Justice System using programmes such as the LEOP programme;
25. Education Authorities should ensure that freedom of speech is upheld within the law and to protect students and staff from illegal antisemitic discourse and a hostile environment in whatever form it takes including calls for boycotts;
26. The Criminal Justice System should publicly notify local communities when antisemitic hate crimes are prosecuted by the courts to build community confidence in reporting and pursuing convictions through the Criminal Justice system;
27. Parliamentarians should engage with civil society institutions and leading NGOs to create partnerships that bring about change locally, domestically and globally, and support efforts that encourage Holocaust education, inter-religious dialogue and cultural exchange;
Media and the Internet
28. Governments should acknowledge the challenge and opportunity of the growing new forms of communication;
29. Media Regulatory Bodies should utilise the EUMC ‘Working Definition of antisemitism’ to inform media standards;
30. Governments should take appropriate and necessary action to prevent the broadcast of antisemitic programmes on satellite television channels, and to apply pressure on the host broadcast nation to take action to prevent the transmission of antisemitic programmes;
31. The OSCE should seek ways to coordinate the response of member states to combat the use of the internet to promote incitement to hatred;
32. Law enforcement authorities should use domestic "hate crime", "incitement to hatred" and other legislation as well as other means to mitigate and, where permissible, to prosecute "Hate on the Internet" where racist and antisemitic content is hosted, published and written;
33. An international task force of Internet specialists comprised of parliamentarians and experts should be established to create common metrics to measure antisemitism and other manifestations of hate online and to develop policy recommendations and practical instruments for Governments and international frameworks to tackle these problems.
Inter-parliamentary Coalition for Combating Antisemitism
34. Participants will endeavour to maintain contact with fellow delegates through working group framework; communicating successes or requesting further support where required;
35. Delegates should reconvene for the next ICCA Conference in Canada in 2010, become an active member of the Inter-parliamentary Coalition and promote and prioritise the London Declaration on Combating Antisemitism.
He said: Honourable senators, I intended to speak at great length on this resolution but today there was a very important and seminal meeting on the other side. An all-party group is being formed led by Scott Reid M.P. to establish a special committee to examine the subject of this material. I was at their meeting, and I would hope that senators on both sides would participate so it is not just a committee made up of members of Parliament of all parties but would also include the Senate. They will take this matter up. I would hope both caucuses next week will take that up and see if there are volunteers on both sides willing to participate.
As honourable senators know, this matter has been before the Senate for close to a decade. I have tried to get if referred to committee and now the other house has taken the leadership on this. I hope we can join in their effort.
(On motion of Senator Grafstein, debate adjourned.)