Soaring numbers of children violent to Jews, new CST report finds

Incidents of antisemitism fell overall by 27 per cent in 2022, mainly due to the lack of 'trigger event' in the Middle East


A growing proportion of antisemitic incidents were perpetrated by children in 2022 and those incidents were “more likely to involve violence”, the Community Security Trust’s latest annual report has found.

Of the incidents where the age of the perpetrator could be established, 20 per cent were minors, compared to 2020 when this figure was just 10 per cent.

Disturbingly, incidents involving children were “more likely to involve violence”, said CST, which found that 24 per cent of violent attacks last year were perpetrated by minors.

Additionally, in nearly a third of violent antisemitic incidents recorded last year, minors were the victims.

The report also found that 87 per cent of antisemitic incidents in 2022 that were politically motivated or linked to specific political parties were associated with Labour, compared to just seven per cent linked to the Conservative Party, and two per cent linked to the British National Party.

Nearly half of the incidents involving children involved Holocaust or Nazi-related rhetoric and discourse, including the glorification of the Nazi genocide or a wish to see it repeated.

Despite these findings, there was a 27 per cent decrease in the total number of antisemitic incidents in 2022 compared to the record high in 2021. However, it was still the fifth-highest total ever recorded.

According to the CST, there were 1,652 anti-Jewish hate incidents in the UK in 2022, which is a fall from the 2,261 incidents in 2021, many of which were triggered by the Israel-Hamas war in May 2021.

The average number of monthly incidents in 2022 was 138, higher than the 10 months of 2021 that were not related to the conflict, indicating a “higher underlying baseline”, the CST says.

Over three quarters of antisemitic incidents last year took place offline, which is the second highest total of offline incidents ever recorded by the CST — these incidents include face-to-face verbal abuse, assault, threats, graffiti and hate mail. Online abuse fell by 35 per cent, partially as a result of the lifting of pandemic-related restrictions.

CST’s chief executive Mark Gardner called for “better education and role models for young people” in order to counter this trend.

He said: “Each month, CST receives well over 100 reports of anti-Jewish hatred. This is what everyday antisemitism now looks like and it is without any particular trigger event, whether domestic or overseas.

“The devil in the detail is the growing number of children who feature as both victims and perpetrators. We need better education and role models for young people and more prosecutions for high profile cases.”

Home Secretary Suella Braverman said: “[This] is a sobering reminder that antisemitism continues to be a scourge on our society, and we cannot be complacent.

“I am committed to ensuring the despicable people who commit these crimes feel the full force of the law,” she added.

READ MORE: The growing antisemitism among children needs urgently addressing, writes CST's Chief Executive Mark Gardner

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