How the EHRC Got It So Wrong
Antisemitism and the Labour Party
Part of the Verso Reports series
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May 2021 / 9781839766480

Labour and the Antisemitism Question: what next?

The controversy around alleged antisemitism in the Labour Party was unprecedented in its protracted ferocity. It contributed to Labour’s electoral defeat in 2019 and tarnished the reputation of the movement that propelled Jeremy Corbyn to Party leader. The EHRC investigated these allegations and, in September 2020, delivered its report. Those groups which had spearheaded the campaign against Labour on this issue heralded the EHRC’s findings as a vindication of claims that Labour under Corbyn was institutionally antisemitic. The Party directed members to accept the findings without question. Yet this ebook report shows that the EHRC’s investigation did not remotely uphold the dominant public accusations against Labour, while even those limited findings it did make cannot withstand factual or legal scrutiny.

The study examines the EHRC’s conclusions and finds:

• no evidence of widespread antisemitism, direct discrimination or victimisation in the Labour Party

• no evidence that Corbyn or his office were responsible for the Party's poor handling of complaints

• no evidence that Corbyn or his office sought systematically to undermine antisemitism complainants or protected those accused

• a dangerous disregard by the EHRC for the elementary democratic as well as legal principle of free speech.

Labour’s new leadership has used the EHRC report as justification for an ongoing crack-down on debate within the Party. Among the dissidents stifled are Jewish members who supported and participated in the Corbyn project. The authors make recommendations for a return to the full, frequent and fearless discussion which must be the lifeblood of any democratic organization.

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