Dear Friend,

Thank you for registering for the first-ever Mayors Summit Against Anti-Semitism, hosted by Frankfurt am Main in partnership with the Combat Anti-Semitism Movement (CAM) yesterday. We are pleased to share all of the panels and sessions below.

Joined by more than 12,000 guests from cities and towns across the world, municipal leaders from more than 32 cities across 21 countries pledged to make the summit the first step in establishing a long-term framework working towards defeating anti-Semitism, prejudice, and hatred.

With anti-Semitic attacks increasing across the world, anti-Semitism is often viewed as a national or international phenomenon. However, anti-Semitism most often manifests itself in cities, towns and other localities – and can best be solved through mayoral initiatives in the areas of education, law-enforcement, and community cohesion.

The summit brought prominent mayors and local leaders together for a crucial dialogue, allowing them to share practical tools and solutions.

Watch Full Summit

The Summit’s plenary session convened many of the world’s brightest municipal leaders from an array of countries in Europe, North America, South America and the Middle East. These distinguished mayors outlined their cities’ approaches to combating anti-Semitism and pledged to work together to ensure the future of inclusivity in our society.

View Plenary Session

Summit host and Frankfurt Mayor Uwe Becker opened the plenary session by warning, “When Jews, our citizens, ask themselves if they will have a safe and secure future in our cities … then it is not five to twelve but ten past twelve and we have to push back… It’s up to us to act.”

Commenting on the 2018 Tree of Life synagogue attack, which killed 11 people, Pittsburgh Mayor William Peduto said, “I never expected that my city would be referred to as the city with the biggest anti-Semitic crime in the U.S… In Pittsburgh we are proud of our interfaith community… Only through that type of cooperation, can we overcome a day like this one, that brought the city to its knees.”

Outlining the multicultural nature of his city, Brussels Mayor Philippe Close commented, “The 10,000 citizens of Brussels of Jewish faith, are often targeted by those who pretend to criticize the policies of the State of Israel … The identity of Brussels is multiple. The Jewish identity is an integral part of Brussels’ DNA. We will never give up on that.”

Toronto Mayor John Tory promoted inclusivity, remarking, “Here in Toronto, in the most diverse city in the world… We have a special responsibility to stand up, to speak and to show up… There is no such thing as a small incident or a small event when it comes to discrimination or the stigmatization of a people.”

Athens Mayor Kostas Bakoyannis highlighted the importance of education, saying, “Historically, anti-Semitism has been the result of lies and disinformation. We will actively discourage any sort of discrimination or any attempt to weaponize the Holocaust. We believe in a proactive approach, in a culture of education.”

Intendant of Montevideo Carolina Cosse emphasized the resonance of Holocaust remembrance today, stating, “Remembering the Holocaust is a moral, political, and cultural imperative for all those who consider themselves humanists…fighting anti-Semitism, one of the most regular manifestations of modern racism, is another human imperative.

Other key speakers during the plenary session included Buenos Aires Mayor Horacio Rodríguez Larreta, Amsterdam Mayor Femke Halsema, Málaga Mayor Francisco de la Torre, Mayor of Riga Mārtiņš Staķis, Tirana Mayor Erion Veliaj, and Vice President of the European Commission for Values and Transparency Vera Jourova.

View Plenary Session

Education and being able to recognize the manifestations and dangers of contemporary anti-Semitism is a first crucial step to preventing its spread. Leaders including Human Rights Commissioner of the City of Vienna Shams Asadi, Bal Harbour Mayor Gabriel Groisman. Mayor of Vaughan Maurizio Bevilacqua, and the Executive Director of Anne Frank House Ronald Leopold spoke about the importance of education and the IHRA working definition of anti-Semitism.

View Panel One

Properly securing Jewish communities is essential to safeguard Jewish life. Speakers discussed how to combat anti-Semitism through a law enforcement approach, particularly the need for cooperation between law enforcement and targeted communities. Panelists included US Senator for Nevada Jacky Rosen and Jewish Federations of North America CEO Eric Fingerhut.

View Panel Two

Knowing how to effectively respond to anti-Semitic attacks is essential for communities to heal. Poway Mayor Steve Vaus and Pittsburgh Jewish Federation CEO Jeffrey Finkelstein shared insights about their communities’ resilience in the aftermath of anti-Semitic attacks. Gina Ross, of the International Trauma-Healing Institute, discussed approaches to help communities heal.

View Panel Three

Building interfaith partnerships is critical to eradicating hatred and anti-Semitism from our midst. As anti-Semitism spreads today at the speed of a click, the panel discussed the important of cross-communal relations in the digital age. Panelists included Head of Faith-Based Partnerships at Facebook Nona Jones, Lord Provost of the City of Edinburgh Frank Ross, Advisor to the Mayor of Wrocław Bartłomiej Ciążyński and the Head of the Union of Italian Jewish Communities Noemi di Segni.

View Panel Four

Address from Director of EU Fundamental Rights Agency:

Director of the EU Agency for Fundamental Rights Michael O’Flaherty spoke about the societal dangers of anti-Semitism, commenting “Anti-Semitism is a serious problem in our societies, and it is getting worse … It is a problem for all of us, it is a challenge to the values on which we base our societies. Here in Europe, if we fail our Jewish community then we have failed as the modern European project.”

View Remarks

The summit also featured interviews, remarks, and city stories from the mayors of Thessaloniki, Ioannina, West Hollywood, Ramapo, Overland Park, Livingston, and others which are available on the summit website here.

By convening the leaders of the the world’s largest cities, alongside smaller ones, policy experts and international leaders, a crucial dialogue was started among municipalities around the world to enact real change and create a lasting impact in the global struggle against contemporary anti-Semitism.



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