The Antisemitism and Israel Crisis Response Team’s hands-on guide can be found at jewishvancouver.com/toolkit.
Since Jewish Federation of Greater Vancouver launched the Antisemitism and Israel Crisis Response Team (AICRT) in November 2023, the team has been dedicated to helping Jewish community members navigate the challenges of a post-Oct. 7 world.
Last week, AICRT – co-chaired by Rabbi Dan Moskovitz and Nico Slobinsky – launched a hands-on guide for community members. It covers everything from tips on engaging in social media, to reporting an antisemitic incident, to hosting neighbours at events so non-Jewish friends can connect with the Jews in their lives in positive ways.
On the day before Federation launched this guide, the Vancouver Police Department released a report that the Vancouver Jewish community experienced a 62% increase in police-reported antisemitic hate incidents in 2023 compared to 2022 – and 33 of 47 incidents occurred after the Oct. 7 terrorist attacks perpetrated by Hamas. (See vpd.ca/news/2024/01/16/israel-hamas-war-fuels-increase-in-hate-crimes-protests-in-2023.)
Antisemitism is a real and present threat, and it’s a growing problem. That’s why Federation, the response team and the Jewish community are coming together to push back against it.
The toolkit is a guide to help people take meaningful actions – as well as advice on where to turn if you need help. All of it is based on two key factors – what the response team has heard from community members about what they need to navigate these dark times, and professional polling of the broader community.
The guide at jewishvancouver.com/toolkit is a living document and will be updated as the situation changes, and new resources are needed. Right now, the contents include:
• Information on well-being and mental health
• Key messages
• Engaging on social media
• How to be a grassroots organizer
• Dealing with antisemitism in K-12 schools
• University resources
• How to write a letter to the editor
• How to engage BC MLAs and MPs
• How to report an antisemitic incident
• How to have difficult conversations with family and friends
The toolkit is designed to help people stand up when needed, and to draw in those who are already inclined to support the community. Write to the Antisemitism and Israel Crisis Response Team at [email protected] with any ideas or comments.
Antisemitism Legal Helpline
The Antisemitism Legal Helpline aims to connect those facing antisemitism with legal information and resources. It is being hosted through Access Pro Bono, a nonprofit providing referrals and legal assistance. Their newly hired coordinator, Dan Rothwell, is a Vancouver lawyer with experience in the public, private and nonprofit sectors. He is keen to connect with community partners to help make this project a valuable tool in the fight against antisemitism, and he can be reached by email: [email protected].
The helpline can be reached at 778-800-8917.
– Courtesy Jewish Federation of Greater Vancouver