Chapter Chat: Antisemitism: Implications for Social Work Involvement

Antisemitism is prejudice or hatred of Jews. This hatred reached its zenith during the Holocaust with the extermination of more than 6,000,000 European Jews by the Nazis. To a large extent, it was the Holocaust which led to the United Nation’s Declaration of Human Rights (1948), founded on protecting the fundamental dignity of all people. Unfortunately, antisemitism has not disappeared, with a resurgence in the last few years both in the United States and globally. According to the ADL, between May, 2020 and May, 2021, there has been a 115% increase in anti-Semitic incidents including attacks and harassment of Jewish people and vandalism.

These incidents, as they violate human rights and social justice, demand social work involvement at all levels of practice. This chat will include a brief history of antisemitism and its manifestation today. It will encourage participants’ engagement in the discussion both as individuals and social workers. Both presenters are active in various organizations in the Jewish community and are committed to social work’s engagement in combatting antisemitism.




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