February 4, 2020
Statement: Federation CJA and CIJA Applaud City of Westmount’s Adoption of IHRA Definition of Antisemitism
Montreal, QC — Last night, the City of Westmount adopted the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s (IHRA) working definition of antisemitism after its city council unanimously voted for a motion introduced by city councillor Mary Gallery and seconded by city councillor Jeff Shamie.
The IHRA definition is the world’s most-widely accepted definition of antisemitism. In 2019, the Government of Canada adopted it as part of its new anti-racism strategy.
In response, Gail Adelson-Marcovitz, President of Federation CJA, and Reuben Poupko, Co-Chair of the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs-Québec (CIJA-Québec), issued the following:
“Westmount’s adoption of the IHRA definition is an important step in the struggle against antisemitism and sets an important precedent for other municipalities on the island of Montreal. We applaud the City of Westmount for showing leadership and demonstrating the need for action in combatting contemporary antisemitism.
“In order to effectively combat resurgent Jew hatred, public authorities need a working definition to effectively identify antisemitic incidents in their respective jurisdictions. The IHRA definition, which has been adopted by dozens of democratic countries, including Canada, now provides this vital tool to the City of Westmount.”
The Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs (CIJA) is the advocacy agent of the Jewish Federations of Canada-UIA, including Montreal’s Federation CJA.