Today the National Union of Students publishes its report following the investigation into antisemitism and the action plan it will take forward on the recommendations.
In May 2022, NUS commissioned Rebecca Tuck KC to lead an independent investigation looking at recent allegations of antisemitism as well as historic matters and broader culture. NUS worked closely with the Union of Jewish Students throughout.
We are confident that the investigations have been thorough, fair and conducted to the highest standards throughout. There is no room for doubt that this process has been as robust as it gets.
The KC’s report is a detailed and shocking account of antisemitism within the student movement. It is a truly difficult read for all of us but we welcome the clarity it brings to enable us to act with confidence to tackle antisemitism head on. There is no place for antisemitism within NUS and we are committed to ensuring that Jewish students feel safe and welcome in every corner of our movement. Antisemitism is an attack on our shared values of equality and solidarity. We have a proud history of fighting struggles alongside Jewish students. We must tackle antisemitism in all its forms with collective responsibility and in doing so restore our collective. We are stronger united.
Our priority now is to take forward the recommendations from Rebecca Tuck KC’s independent report to tackle antisemitism in all its forms across the breadth and depth of NUS. We have developed an action plan which will help us achieve this, but it is vital that we listen and learn from others, which is why we are setting up an Advisory Panel to scrutinise this plan and oversee its implementation. We must shine a light on the realities of antisemitism and be transparent in our reporting of progress.
Our action plan has 5 key areas of work each with specific actions and deadlines for implementation, a summary of which is provided below:
A proud and unwavering commitment to understanding and tackling antisemitism in all its forms within NUS and the student movement
a.) Full transparency
b.) Advisory Panel to oversee the implementation of the plan for a minimum of 5 years
c.) Training for all staff and elected leaders and advanced training for key individuals
Permanent formal representation for Jewish students within a wider Inclusion and Liberation Strategy for NUS
a.) Reinstate NUS’ Anti-Racism Anti-Fascism Committee with dedicated representation for Jewish students
b.) Associate Membership for UJS
c.) A new Inclusion and Liberation Strategy for NUS
Changing culture through education, practice and dialogue
a.) Educational materials on constructive dialogue
b.) Guidance on minimising harm in activity relating to Israel and Palestine within student politics
c.) Strengthening community relations between key student groups
An enhanced Candidate Preparation Process for NUS elections
b.) Deal with historic conduct and ‘digital footprint’
c.) Risk assessment and safety plan
Strengthen NUS’s governance
a.) Clear boundaries between ‘political’ and ‘operational’ matters
b.)An external speakers policy
c.) Strengthened data retention
As we look to the future, our action plan will centre the voices of the Jewish students we are here to represent. However, it is essential that Jewish students alone are not expected to carry the burden of delivering change and identifying issues. We recognise that tackling antisemitism is the responsibility of everyone within NUS and across the Higher Education sector and therefore we will work in lockstep with others to bring about positive change.
Whilst the independent investigation has come to its conclusion, we understand that this is an ongoing endeavour. We have rightly opened ourselves up to scrutiny and welcome the findings from the independent investigations. Our action plan is the next step towards earning and restoring trust with Jewish students and to ensuring they are able to feel safe and supported within NUS.
The report, action plan and FAQs are available here.