Following sad news of Brian Kerner’s passing last night, JLC Chair, Jonathan Goldstein pays tribute:
Brian was driven by a love and commitment to British Jews and Israel, but also a passion for getting things done efficiently. He would always dryly observe that there were thousands of Jewish organisations in Britain, all replicating each other's work. Brian's lifelong push for cooperation and collaboration led him to have a hand in the creation of many of the institutions of UK Jewish life.
As chair of the United Israel Appeal, Brian led the merger with Jewish Continuity that created the UJIA. At the start of the second Intifada, he brought together different Jewish and pro-Israel organisations in a Cross-Community Coordination Group (CCG) to plan for the crisis, and ended establishing and helping to lead BICOM. As chair of the CCG, Brian was also involved in setting up the JLC itself.
Brian was one of the first Jewish leaders to recognise the threat of the anti-Israel boycott movement. He founded the Fair Play Campaign, the Jewish world's first standing anti-boycott umbrella group, and acted as its Co Chairman.
Anyone who worked with Brian will also remember his sharp wit, his occasionally-risqué sense of humour and his love of Arsenal football club. Brian was a dedicated fundraiser who was always willing to lend support of his time, his resources, his connections and his passion.
The British Jewish community was immensely enriched by Brian's work, and is poorer for his passing. I wish his wife Sylvia and family comfort and pray that his memory will be a blessing.
JLC PRESS RELEASE
Thursday 20th December 2018
JLC Board & Council of Membership Change
The Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government has announced that Gerald Ronson CBE has agreed to lead, jointly with Lord Feldman, the national fundraising effort for the Memorial to the Holocaust and Learning Centre. Following this announcement, the Jewish Leadership Council (‘JLC’) has been informed that Gerald Ronson CBE is stepping down from the JLC’s Board and Council of Membership to focus on his new role; the changes are with immediate effect.
Commenting, Jonathan Goldstein, JLC Chairman said:
“On behalf of everyone at the JLC, I would like to thank Gerald for the tremendous contribution he has made to the JLC since the organisation was founded in 2003. Gerald is one of the greatest leaders in our community and has been an unparalleled mentor for me and so many others.”
Gerald Ronson CBE, commented:
“As 2019 approaches, I have been reviewing my business and Community commitments. I have agreed to support the Government in leading the fundraising campaign for the UK Holocaust Memorial and Learning Centre. I expect that this very important project will take a considerable amount of my time and, coupled with my role as Chairman of the Community Security Trust, the work of my Foundation, and my business interests, I believe that it is time for me to step down from the Jewish Leadership Council. The JLC plays a fundamental role in our community and I am proud to have been of service for the last 15 years; the JLC will continue to have my support and guidance whenever it is needed.”
Come and see the JLC at Limmud this year
JLC Chair, Jonathan Goldstein, will be at the following sessions:
Sunday 14.40, Orange 10: The future of the Jewish community
Jonathan Goldstein will be talking about the JLC plans for the future of the Jewish community including: antisemitism in the Labour Party, financial sustainability of the Jewish Community and welfare of the Jewish Community (social care and mental health).
Sunday 16.00, Red 1: Corbyn’s Labour and the American Democratic Party on Israel and the Jewish Community
On the panel: Andrew Gilbert Ella Rose Jonathan Goldstein Kenneth Bob
The British Labour party under Jeremy Corbyn has lost a lot of its Jewish support both around antisemitism and also as it has changed and continues to change its view of the Middle East - Israel/Palestine. Are there any similarities with trends in the Democrat Party in the USA? What are the influencing factors? Bibi? Trump? Internal? Campus? Ethnic?
Sunday 18.40, Orange 15: Wes Streeting of Ilford North - it used to be quite Jewish
On the panel: Marie van der Zyl Jonathan Goldstein Wes Streeting MP Adrian Cohen Daniel Carmel-Brown
Wes is one of the lead voices supporting us but also is the MP for Ilford North which was once the heart of the Jewish community but today is over 50% Muslim, Hindu, Sikh. What can the Jewish community learn from interfaith, interethnic interactions.
Claudia Mendoza, Director of Policy and Public Affairs will be at the following sessions:
Monday 17.30, Orange 15: Antisemitism, Brexit, Corbyn: an ABC of UK Jewish public policy
On the panel: Claudia Mendoza Philip Rosenberg
The key public policy professionals from the Board of Deputies of British Jews and the Jewish Leadership Council look back on the main challenges facing the Jewish community in 2018 and look ahead to what to expect in 2019. They will be seeking your input in to how the community should respond to the key issues of the day.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
5th December 2018
Jewish community gathers in Trafalgar Square to celebrate Chanukah
The Jewish community gathered in London’s Trafalgar Square to #UniteUnderTheLight for a fun and entertaining evening to celebrate Chanukah, the festival of light, with exciting new musical acts, speeches and performances.
There were a number of headline acts including the Solomon Brothers (as seen on “The Voice”, Israel), the Kedma Band with Rabbi Levene, alongside traditional performances from Akiva School Choir, appearances around the Square from Dreidleman and speeches from the Mayor of London, Sadiq Kahn, Israeli Ambassador, Mark Regev, and Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis. The evening was compèred by award winning comedian Rachel Creeger.
It is estimated that more than 3,500 people attended the event.
Chanukah in the Square this year was an opportunity for the Jewish community to come together in unity to celebrate a festival, which commemorates the triumph of light over darkness.
A new, temporary menorah was used for the event this year, allowing the event to continue to be a source of pride and a symbol of unity for everyone in the Jewish community.
We were thrilled that there were so many people from the Jewish community, other faiths, backgrounds, and people from all over London joined us to celebrate Chanukah.
The menorah will stay up in Trafalgar Square for the duration of Chanukah, with a new light added on each night of the festival.
Chanukah in the Square this year was jointly presented by the Jewish Leadership Council, Chabad Lubavitch UK, London Jewish Forum, Genesis Philanthropy Group and supported by the CST and Mayor of London.
🕎 It's time to #uniteunderthelight for Chanukah next Wednesday in London's Trafalgar Square. Our JLC Chief Executive Simon Johnson has this message 🕎
JLC Community Wellbeing Task Force Introduces Pilot Project in 5 Jewish Schools
The Community Wellbeing Task Force is a JLC-led initiative to address the increasing mental health challenges facing Jewish children and young people today. Exemplifying the very best of cross-communal collaboration, the pilot project is the first result of the commitment and dedication of JLC member organisations including Norwood, Jami, Camp Simcha, PaJeS and Reshet, with support and guidance from generous philanthropic individuals and foundations.
The Community Wellbeing Project is a 3-year pilot scheme stemming from the advice of an expert panel and commissioned research, which identified that a positive approach to mental health and wellbeing requires an educated partnership between school staff, parents/carers and students. All stakeholders must work together to ensure a culture of wellbeing exists throughout the school.
According to the Mental Health Foundation, one in ten children in the UK (three per classroom) aged between 5-16 has a diagnosable mental health problem. At a recent PaJeS conference, Jewish primary and secondary school teachers spoke of the increasing challenges in managing the additional pressure of student’s mental health related issues and how and where to direct them. The Jewish community offers complementary support to many statutory services and the JLC believes the enormity of the challenge requires no different.
Wellbeing Practitioners are being recruited in 5 pilot schools in London and Manchester to build on existing programmes, run new evidence-based initiatives and work together to share best practices. The pilot schools are Yavneh College, JFS, JCoSS, Broughton Jewish Primary School and Rimon Primary School.
The Wellbeing Practitioner will support the school in the development and delivery of its whole school approach to emotional wellbeing. They will also have oversight of the implementation of all wellbeing resources used in the school, ensuring a holistic, coordinated and thorough programme of activity that reaches out in creative and imaginative ways. The project will combine current communal expertise, resources and capacity with best practise from outside the community.
The Community Wellbeing Taskforce is to be chaired by Nicola Cobbold. Clinical governance for the pilot project is being led by Dr Mark Berelowitz, child and adolescent psychiatrist at the Royal Free Hospital and the project is being managed by Julia Alberga on behalf of the JLC. Monitoring and evaluation of the 3-year pilot will be provided by The Anna Freud Centre.
Jonathan Goldstein, Chair of the Jewish Leadership Council said: “This is the JLC at its best – bringing together the very finest of our community and working collaboratively to identify and implement solutions to address the long term problems we face. I am proud we have banded together to work as one and I am confident that the coalition we have assembled will continue to work towards our collective goal: protecting the mental wellbeing of our children.”
Rachel Fink, Headteacher JFS, said: “We are excited and privileged to be involved in the community wellbeing project which reflects the importance we place on mental health and wellbeing across the community.”
Julia Alberga, project manager said, “In recognising the importance of this project, communal organisations and philanthropic individuals and foundations are working together to ensure the positive wellbeing of future generations of Jewish children.”
Vice President of the Jewish Leadership Council (JLC), Lord Monroe Palmer, today hosted a lunch for Liberal Democrat Parliamentarians. Representatives from the JLC, including Chair, Jonathan Goldstein were present.
The lunch was an opportunity for MPs and Peers to hear about issues of interest to the Jewish community and JLC member organisations. The discussion covered a wide range of policy areas including education, social care, mental health, antisemitism and community security.
The lunch was attended by 8 MPs and 9 Peers.
Liberal Democrat Peer, Lord Monroe Palmer said:
"I have been delighted to host this afternoon's lunch and continue the collaborative relationship the Jewish Leadership Council have with the Liberal Democrats. It is vitally important we continue to work together against this backdrop of division within our society."
JLC Chair, Jonathan Goldstein, said:
“I was delighted so many Liberal Democrat parliamentarians were able to join us at today’s lunch. It was a fantastic opportunity to highlight the work of our members and strengthen the relationship between the community and the party.”
It appears that the escalation in Gaza has resulted in Israel coming under repeated and sustained attacks aimed at causing death and destruction amongst its civilians. We stand in solidarity with the people of Israel and support Israel’s right to defend its citizens from these murderous attacks. We pray that all sides will rapidly be able to find a peaceful deescalation to the urgent situation.
Record number of London councillors at Jewish local government event
More than 120 council representatives from every London borough hear about issues such as housing and social action
Councillors from every London borough attended a seminar organised by Jewish groups on Sunday, where they heard “powerful testimony” from Holocaust survivor Dr Martin Stern.
Organisers at the Board of Deputies, Jewish Leadership Council (JLC) and London Jewish Forum (LJF) said more than 120 councillors made it “the biggest attendance for any such event”.
Among the issues discussed were antisemitism, Israel, education, social care, the housing needs of the Charedi community, and social action, with speakers including Board vice-president Edwin Shuker and the JLC’s Claudia Mendoza.
More than 120 councillors from almost every London borough attended a councillor seminar organised by the Board of Deputies, Jewish Leadership Council and London Jewish Forum.
This was the biggest attendance for any such event, with a significant number of council leaders and cabinet members in attendance. Many of the Labour councillors said that they had felt it particularly important to attend in solidarity with the Jewish community, in light of tensions between the Party and British Jews.
The seminar covered a wide range of issues including antisemitism, Israel, education, social care, the Charedi community and social action, with sector leaders from different parts of the Jewish community talking through the areas of expertise.
Among other speakers were Lee Scott, special adviser to the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, and former MP for Ilford North.
Marie van der Zyl, President of the Board of Deputies of British Jews, said “We have run these events around the country for councillors from all parties. They are critical to winning the arguments on issues like antisemitism. We were delighted by the response yesterday and look forward to working with councillors across London and the UK going forward.”
Claudia Mendoza, the Jewish Leadership Council’s Director of Policy and Public Affairs, said: “For many of our members, engagement and funding from local authorities is a necessity. It is vital that councillors hear directly from us the issues we face, particularly where there are cultural sensitivities. Having every London Council represented made the event a tremendous success”.
Adrian Cohen, the chair of the London Jewish Forum said: “It was encouraging to see so many councillors from all over London at the seminar yesterday, engaging with a range of issues that affect Jewish Londoners. We are a diverse community and we were pleased to be able to provide insight and understanding to councillors on social care, housing, security and social cohesion and the value we place on social action and education.”
You can read more about the event here: