Council Motion

Councils pass one-sided ceasefire motions

Pro-Palestine demonstrators disrupt meetings.

Pro-Palestinian activists are using social media to motivate their supporters to put pressure on local councils to pass these sort of motions.
Pro-Palestinian activists are using social media to motivate their supporters to put pressure on local councils to pass these sort of motions.

Inner-city Darebin Council has voted in favour of boycotting companies with Israeli links.

It’s joined Maribyrnong Merri-Bek and Yarra councils in passing one-sided motions against Israel’s response to the Hamas terrorist attack of October 7.

The motion calls for the council to investigate how to end contracts with “companies and suppliers that support the illegal occupation of Palestine … especially companies which supply equipment to the Israeli Defence Force’’.

Zeddy Lawrence, Executive Director of Zionism Victoria said “If the council considered ending contracts with companies, suppliers and organisations that facilitated the construction of Hamas terror tunnels and rockets as well … this would certainly be a far less one-sided motion, and … perhaps lend more credence to the motion’s claim that it stands against anti-Semitism.

The Jewish Community Council say they have been contacted by many Jewish residents in these council areas, as well as Jewish employees at some of these councils.

JCCV President Philip Zajac said “They are anxious, afraid and angry about these motions, which have nothing to do with improving local neighbourhoods. Jewish residents are not being consulted by councillors and, in many cases, do not feel safe to attend council meetings and speak out” he said.

The JCCV has written to many of the councillors involved in these decisions on behalf of local Jews, telling them the motions damage social cohesion, create unsafe neighbourhoods and alienate local residents.

Zajac said “We have also called on Victorian Minister for Local Government Melissa Horne to remind councillors of their obligations under the Local Government Act and their responsibilities to build a harmonious society, rather than passing divisive motions.”

Dr Dvir Abramovich, Chair of the Anti-Defamation Commission, said this will only foment an atmosphere of hostility against the Jewish community and anyone who supports Israel.

”No wonder that a Jewish resident of Darebin, who was afraid to attend [the] meeting, told me that her young son warned her of wearing a Star of David around her neck walking the streets of her neighbourhood in case she was attacked” he said..

MP for Caulfield David Southwick has written to the Mayors of three councils which have debated similar motions recently, Darebin, Yarra and Monash, describing them as one-sided and divisive, with far reaching negative consequences.

“In recent weeks have seen Jewish businesses branded with Star of David boycott stickers, reminiscent of the Judenboykott in 1930s Germany. I know many Jewish businessowners have shared their fear of similar attack if their Jewishness is made public” he said.

“On a more positive note, Monash Council also debated a motion on Gaza [on Tuesday night], and I wrote in similar terms to all Councillors prior to that meeting as well.  Pleasingly, more sense and empathy prevailed, and the motion failed 2 to 7” Southwick said.

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