First Austrian National Forum against Anti-Semitism Meets in Vienna

PeopleOther ♦ Published: June 14, 2022; 23:34 ♦ (Vindobona)

The first Austrian national forum marks another milestone in the Austrian national strategy against Anti-Semitism. Anti-Semitism is still a problem in many places. Austrian complicity in the Holocaust and recurring attacks against Jews explain the importance of this forum.

Austrian Federal Minister Karoline Edtstadler (l.) and IKG President Oskar Deutsch (r.) hosted a forum against anti-Semitism. Pictured at the press conference. / Picture: © Bundeskanzleramt (BKA) / Andy Wenzel

Austria organized its first National Forum against Anti-Semitism. The forum is hosted in joint efforts of the Federal Chancellory and Austrian Israelite Community (IGK).

The holding of the first National Forum against Anti-Semitism marks another important step in the fight against anti-Semitism in Austria. 80 high-ranking representatives of society are pooling their knowledge in the newly established forum to combat anti-Semitism and promote Jewish life in Austria.

"Everyone is needed in the fight against anti-Semitism. The increase in anti-Semitic incidents last year, unfortunately, shows us that anti-Semitism is still at the center of our society. There is, therefore, a need for a society-wide approach in the fight against anti-Semitism," said the initiator of the National Forum against Anti-Semitism, Federal Minister Karoline Edtstadler.

"The National Forum against Anti-Semitism is, above all, through the broad involvement of different actors, a catalyst for taking decisive action against anti-Semitism as an open and democratic society at all levels, in sports, in culture, in companies and educational institutions in all federal states, to give diversity and tolerance their space," said the President of the Israelite Religious Society and the Religious Community of Vienna, Oskar Deutsch.

The forum, which will meet annually from now on, is composed of representatives of the federal government, the provinces, the municipalities, the social partners, academia, the faith communities, Jewish museums and civil society.

The National Forum against Anti-Semitism is another project of the National Strategy against Anti-Semitism. Already the implementation report presented by Federal Minister Edtstadler in January 2022 underlines Austria's pioneering role in the fight against anti-Semitism. For example, funding for Jewish life in Austria has been tripled and new courses have been established in the police, the judiciary and the armed forces.

"Anti-Semitism is a cross-cutting issue to which there can only be a hybrid societal response. We want to join forces, gather knowledge and push for stronger cooperation in the fight against anti-Semitism," said Federal Minister Karoline Edtstadler.

Federal Chancellery of Austria

IKG - Vienna Israelite Community