Jeremy Corbyn has made Labour a “welcoming refuge” for antisemitism and the party is “no longer a safe space for Jewish people”, a dossier submitted to the human rights watchdog warns.
The Jewish Labour Movement (JLM) document, which wasleaked on Friday, reveals sworn statements from 70 present and former Labour staffers which will be given to the Equalities and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) inquiry into antisemitism in the party.
Labour is only the second ever political party to have been probed by the EHRC, after the British National Party (BNP).
Compiled over 13 months up until November, the 53-page dossier concludes the Labour Party is “no longer a safe space for Jewish people”, with a “relentless flow” of antisemitic incidents.
The personal accounts of antisemitism in the JLM dossier include:
At Labour’s 2017 conference, a member said he shared a table with two delegates he did not know who agreed Jews were “subhuman”, “didn’t deserve to be allowed to define what constitutes antisemitism” and should be “grateful we don’t make them eat bacon…”
One person listed 22 examples of antisemitic abuse directed at him at local party meetings, including being called “a Tory Jew”, “a child killer”, “Zio scum”, being told “he’s good with money”, “to shut the f*** up, Jew” and “Hitler was right”
South Tottenham’s membership secretary objected to member applications from 25 ultra-orthodox Jews and required home visits to their houses – which is not a requirement
A party member said: “The only reason we have prostitutes in Seven Sisters is because of the Jews”
Margaret Hodge, after writing a Sunday Times article, received Facebook messages from Corbyn-supporting groups calling her a “Zionist b****”, “Zionist remedial cancer”, “damaging Labour in the interests of Israel” and “under the orders of her paymaster in Israel”
A Labour member said at a local meetings other members defended a person who repeated “the over-representation of Jews in the capitalist ruling class that gives the Israel-Zionist lobby its power”
A parliamentary candidate described witnessing a member tell a Jewish councillor to “go home and count their money” after they were deselected
At a conference fringe event a speaker said they had the right to discuss whether the Holocaust happened – nobody called out the behaviour and a member said US police who killed black teens were probably trained in Israel
A 2017 parliamentary candidate said he received a large amount of antisemitic commentary on social media, including: “You and your Zionist cult are NOT welcome. This is London. Not Tel Aviv.”
One member said he was leafleting for a rule change to prohibit all types of discrimination and was called racist and members said they would not support the change because JLM was “financed and controlled by the Israeli government”
One former staffer at the Leader’s Office said he was subjected to an “inquisition” about being Jewish, including his views on Israel
A sixth form student said he was forced to leave the Labour Party Forum’s Facebook group shortly after joining after members searched his account for links to Jewish organisations and accused him of being a Zionist operative.
The dossier claims there is a culture of antisemitism in the party which top party officials are “ignoring, denying, relativising and accepting”.
Mr Corbyn is personally accused of “publicly supporting antisemites and antisemitic tropes” under a party “cast in his image” that is now “institutionally antisemitic”.
The Labour leader responded to the dossier by insisting he did not interfere with cases and there were only a “small number” that were “in-train”.
“I deeply regret there is any antisemitism in our society,” he added. “Obviously I regret the way in which some people have been hurt by it and I do not want that to be the case.”
The Labour Party added claims anyone had been instructed to lie were “categorically untrue” and that the number of outstanding cases, reported by JLM as 136, was “not accurate”.
JLM, which has been affiliated with the Labour Party for 99 years, said testimony it had compiled led it to believe that Labour had “made the political calculation that antisemitism is a price worth paying to maintain its internal party unity”.
It said there are “no credible figures” for how many complaints are waiting to be dealt with.
At a press conference held by JLM and its lawyers on Friday, whistleblower Sam Matthews, who was head of disputes at Labour, said the “intolerable” problem of antisemitism within the party had left him considering taking his own life.
Lord Falconer of Thoroton, a former Labour justice secretary, said he has “the gravest concerns” about Mr Corbyn’s leadership after the “utterly damning” dossier.
He told The Times: “It’s a leadership issue which the leadership should have dealt with.
“I believe it to be utterly damning of the Labour Party. It shows strong evidence of an institutional attempt to sweep under the carpet evidence of antisemitism.”