Alicia Kearns contributed to this important article about holocaust denial, and the insidious rise in anti-semitism in our communities.
Alicia Kearns, a hate crime expert who has worked with the Ministry of Justice and in counter-terrorism, said that we need to trust our instincts – if something seems off, think about why.
‘What is most insidious about anti-Semitism is how perpetrators seek to normalise what is nothing more than hatred,’ she told Metro.co.uk.
‘They seek to silence victims, strangling their voices. It’s important we trust our intuition. We will each feel uncomfortable, or that something is wrong, when hatred is being spread – even in the most obscured manner. We must give victims a voice, and use ours to challenge and stop any attempt to legitimise hatred.’
Kearns added that the authorities will treat reports of Holocaust denial as a hate crime, and that it’s important to report any incidents to the police. ‘It’s important that all of us challenge hatred whenever we encounter it, whether online or in person,’ she said. ‘If you become aware of an organisation or individual driving hatred by perpetrating the idea that the Holocaust was not real, you can visit your local police station, or alternatively make a report online to the Community Security Trust, which also offers support to victims. Online, you can also report any individual or group’s posts to the social media provider.
‘Working to tackle violent extremism in the UK, it is all too common to come across holocaust denial as an insidious thread of narratives excusing hatred towards individuals of the Jewish faith. Sadly it is becoming far too common on social media.
'We need to each step up, speak out, and take part in conversations online and in our communities to ensure that divisionary world-views some have inherited or constructed has no place in our shared futures.’