The Right President at the Right Time
for the Board of Deputies of British Jews Deputies
With the unprecedented challenges of a pandemic, national lockdown and fighting antisemitism in the Labour Party, these past few years have been some of the toughest times British Jews have faced in recent history.
I never imagined that my first three years as President would be so demanding, and yet, with each challenge, rather than feeling worn down, I have felt energised by the steadfast dedication of our communal institutions, our schools, care homes, advocacy groups, synagogues and leaders; especially our deeply-committed Deputies.
Three years on and I have never been so proud to be a British Jew. Our community has shown its characteristic resilience, whether it has been through our refusal to stand down when intimidated by the racism in Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour Party, or via our daily determination, despite our disproportionate losses, to keep standing up and keep choosing to creatively celebrate our Jewish way of life.
We might have been forgiven for putting our own interests first, but we have continued standing up for Israel and for others, whether it has been the Uyghur Muslims in China, or the other minorities in the UK, who, like us, have needed to protect their burial rites and rituals during the Covid-19 pandemic. Jewish life no longer fits into neat boxes, and the pandemic has reminded us that our community is a diverse place with endless virtual and in-person opportunities to stand together, shoulder to shoulder…
The next few years will be vital for our community and the Board must stay relevant to meet all challenges. I will continue to work tirelessly for our community, as I have throughout the antisemitism crisis, throughout the pandemic, and throughout the last three years.