Many hundreds tuned in to a timely Maccabi webinar called “Giving Antisemitism the Boot” on October 29, to watch journalist and author Sharri Markson host a Q&A with the UK government’s adviser on antisemitism, Lord John Mann.
In terms of grassroots sport, Lord Mann’s advice to Jewish players or teams that experience antisemitism is to always report the incident, whether it is to parents, the team’s manager, or Maccabi.
“Telling people is important – even if it is kept confidential, or the decision of parents to protect their child is not to challenge the perpetrator – because there will be a positive impact from it,” he said.
“Then, those doing the organising – [for example] Maccabi, or sport associations … can do things to ensure that this is not accepted and that this is dealt with at the source.
“It [the information] can then be used to challenge the authorities, be it a football club, a football association, be it a university, a local, state or national politician.
“It gives us some of what we need to push them to either do something about it, or to do more.”
Lord Mann also spoke about the power of popular, professional sports to drive positive change, “because the reach of sport is phenomenal”.
He said in the UK recently, education programs about what antisemitism is, how it manifests and what people should do about it, are being delivered to staff in many English Premier League clubs, Super League rugby league clubs and county cricket clubs, while Maccabi UK is running similar programs at the grassroots level.
“There can’t be enough of this kind of work, both now and into the future,” he said.
At the end of the webinar, Maccabi Life Australia chair Lauren Ehrlich said Maccabi recently launched a Mental Wellness Family Toolkit, designed to help community members to navigate the difficult times currently being experienced and to look after each other.
The online resource includes many useful articles, advice and tips Visit https://maccabi.ink/wellness