The Jewish Labour Movement has called on Labour to “deliver a gold standard on acting on antisemitism” amid concerns about changes to the party’s hierarchy.
Representatives of the Jewish group met party leader Jeremy Corbyn’s aides this morning to discuss worries relating to the election of hard-left activists to the party’s national executive committee this week.
The JLM said the results of a series of high-profile antisemitism cases due to be heard by the national constitution committee this month would “send an important signal to the Jewish community”.
The group said serious cases of alleged antisemitism were “currently taking far too long to conclude”.
Jeremy Newmark, JLM chair, spoke out after three members backed by the hard-left Momentum group allied to Mr Corbyn were elected to the NEC on Monday.
That move prompted moderate Labour MPs to voice their fears about possible deselection threats.
Yesterday, the NEC voted by 22 to 15 to remove Ann Black, chair of the party’s disputes panel, and replace her with veteran left-winger Christine Shawcroft.
In May 2016, Ms Shawcroft accompanied Tony Greenstein, the Jewish anti-Zionist activist, when he was questioned as part of Labour’s investigation into his suspension for an alleged breach of party rules. She acted as his silent witness.
Reports following yesterday’s NEC meeting claimed some cases of alleged antisemitism being handled by the disputes panel had seen activists handed lesser sanctions than had previously been recommended following Ms Shawcroft’s election.
Those claims were subsequently dismissed by Ms Shawcroft and a Jewish member of the NEC.
Mr Newmark said: “We met with the leader’s office this morning to share the concerns that have been expressed over the past day.
“It is our understanding that all of the recommendations placed before the committee yesterday on antisemitism cases were either adopted or strengthened.
“We also understand that the committee addressed our complaints that serious disputes are currently taking far too long to conclude.
“The next few weeks will see the NCC consider a number of high-profile cases of antisemitism. The results will send an important signal to the Jewish community.
“Having strengthened its rules at party conference last year, there can be no further excuses for failure to deliver a gold standard in acting on antisemitism.”