Liz Truss slammed for 'unfounded' civil service antisemitism allegation

The candidate for Prime Minister said civil service culture can 'stray into antisemitism' in address to UK Jews


Conservative party leadership candidate Liz Truss has come under fire from union leaders and other MPs after alleging that "woke culture" in the civil service “strays into antisemitism.”

In a press release earlier today, the Truss campaign released a list of pledges to the Jewish community including "changing civil service culture", improving antisemitism education in schools and working to secure a free trade deal between the UK and Israel.

Shortly after Truss' campaign promises to the community were unveiled, she attracted flack from civil service union leader Dave Penman.

Penman, who is General Secretary of the FDA union, which represents managers and professionals in the public sector released a statement criticising Truss for "unfounded accusations of antisemitism"

Calling Truss' pledges "more than the usual dog-whistle politics", Penman said: "The Conservatives have been in government for more than 12 years now and, for
most of that time, Liz Truss has been a minister.

"So accusations of 'civil service wokeism' are a little ironic, given it's essentially a criticism of their own leadership.

"However, Truss's accusation of antisemitism goes further than the usual dog-whistle politics that has been on display during this leadership campaign when it comes to the civil service. She provides no evidence for her accusation that many civil servants will find both insulting and abhorrent.

"A Prime Minister is also Minister for the Civil Service, and throwing around such unfounded inflammatory accusations illustrates a lack of leadership, the very thing that she claims to be demonstrating."

Jewish MP Margaret Hodge also slammed Truss in a tweet, saying: "Using antisemitism to peddle the right's 'anti-woke agenda' is below the belt. The oldest form of racism is not a tool to use in the divisive culture war nonsense."

Hodge was joined in her criticism of Truss by fellow Jewish MP Charlotte Nichols, who addressed Truss directly, giving her a list of policy suggestions regarding Jewish people and saying: "rather than using the Jewish community as a spurious pretext for another baseless attack on the civil service, here are five things you could do to actually help Jewish people in Britain as PM."

Earlier this week, Truss made a series of pledges to Britain's Jews in an interview with JC political editor David Rose.

Speaking in Manchester, she laid out a full list of promises including an assurance that the UK will do all it can to stop Iran building a nuclear weapon and trying to slash exorbitant roaming phone charges UK visitors pay in Israel.

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