Jews in Scotland are considering leaving the country over antisemitism according to a senior community leader.
Ephraim Borowski, director of the Scottish Council of Jewish Communities (SCoJeC) said that Jews living in Scotland felt “alienated, vulnerable and not at home”.
Although the meeting took place in February the contents of the discussion were not reported at the time.
Speaking to the cross party group Mr Borowski said: “The general message is not that it is terrible being Jewish in Scotland.
"But in recent years there has been a very worrying increase in the level of antisemitism in the country, with the result that many Jewish people report they are actively considering emigrating from Scotland.”
He said that Jews were “treated differently” to everyone else and “singled out” in relation to antisemitism.
He added that the principle to come out of the Macpherson Report, which defined a racist incident as "any incident which is perceived to be racist by the victim or any other person" was not being applied to Jews.
Mr Borowski said: “That principle is only challenged in the context of antisemitism. People saying that some action or statement is not antisemitism. This is others trying to define the Jewish communities hurt.”
The SCoJec director also said that while Scotland has a small number of reported incidents of antisemitism that did not mean the country was more welcoming than other parts of the UK where reports are higher.
He noted that Scotland is home to about 2 per cent of the UK’s Jewish population.
“Mostly the Jewish community used to feel that Scotland was a good place to be Jewish but for many that has reversed,” he said.
“Many Jews actively discuss leaving Scotland because they feel alienated, vulnerable and not at home.”
When asked by The Herald on Sunday how typical it was for members of the Jewish community in Scotland to be considering leaving, Mr Borowski pointed to SCoJec research carried out in 2015 in which a third of respondents described a heightened level of anxiety, discomfort, or vulnerability.
Mark Gardner, director of communications at the Community Security Trust, said: “This is an accurate summary of the fact that despite the many positives of Scottish Jewish life, many Jews are still considerably more nervous about the state of antisemitism, politics and society than was the case 10 or 20 years ago.
“A similar trend can be seen in Jewish communities across Europe and in this context, Scotland and indeed the UK as a whole remain relatively better than elsewhere.”