British Law Student Wins $1,300 Payment for Anti-Semitic Abuse
— A Jewish law student in Britain will receive a public apology and about $1,300 from the student union of York University for anti-Semitic abuse.
The payment is reported to be the first of its kind for a British university. The apology comes from the university’s student union and reportedly will be published on line.
Zachary Confino said he was subject to abuse over two years from fellow students, and that the university did not intervene to help. He said he suffered from about 20 such incidents during each of his second and third years of law school.
He told British media that the stress from the incidents ruined his experience at university and prevented him from achieving a first-class degree, which he narrowly missed.
Among the reported anti-Semitic abuses, Confino was called a “Jewish prick” and an “Israeli twat,” and was told that Hitler was “on to something,” The Guardian reported.
Confino had opposed a student union motion to boycott Israeli goods and leafleted against a staging at the university by the Palestinian Solidarity Society of the anti-Israel play “Seven Jewish Children,” dealing with Israeli rockets strikes on Gaza.
“The University is committed to preserving the right to freedom of expression while also combating anti-Semitism, Islamophobia and any other form of race hate. We welcome students from all backgrounds, faiths and nationalities in our diverse community,” a spokesperson for the university said in a statement.
The university said it had acted as a mediator between Confino and the student government.
The settlement was reached after the intervention of the universities minister, Jo Johnson, who is the brother of former London mayor Boris Johnson.