Labour’s antisemitism data release reveals genuine problem – and media exaggeration

A single case of antisemitism in the Labour Party is too many – but figures released by the party show the ‘Labour antisemitism problem’ has been vastly exaggerated – and represents only around 0.1% of its 500,000+ membership

On Monday night, the Labour Party released statistical data on allegations of antisemitism in the party. It demonstrates the scale of Labour’s efforts to combat antisemitism in the party – and the scale of the exaggeration of the issue by the so-called ‘mainstream media’.

Labour Antisemitism Stats from April 2018

As Jennie Formby told MPs on Monday night, the party under previous general secretary Iain McNicol was not separately classifying complaints of antisemitism. Since April 2018 – just ten days after Formby was appointed to succeed McNicol – the party has kept a specific record.

The total number of complaints in the period since then represents about 0.2% of Labour’s colossal membership:

  • 1,106 complaints lodged
  • 433 relate to non-Labour members
  • 96 members suspended
  • 146 written warning
  • 211 served notice of investigation
  • 220 had insufficient evidence

Of course, a single case is too many, but even if all complaints had been well founded, they would represent a tiny proportion of the membership – and far below levels of antisemitism in the general population.

But not all complaints were justified. Forty percent of complaints did not relate to Labour members, while another twenty percent amounted to no case to answer.

Sixty percent, therefore, of the proportionally tiny but hugely-publicised ‘Labour antisemitism problem’ either had nothing to do with Labour or was a false or flimsy accusation.

Labour Antisemitism cases dealt with by NEC Disputes Panel

• 44 quit the Labour party before their hearing
• 42 were referred for assessment by the NCC (see below)
• 16 were given a formal warning
• 6 were referred for further investigation
• 25 served a reminder of conduct
• 6 exonerated

Antisemitism cases referred to highest panel (NCC)

Of the cases referred to the National Constitutional Committee (NCC), Labour’s highest disciplinary body, after the completion of the investigation into allegations against them:

  • 16 received a formal warning from the NEC
  • 6 were sanctioned short of expulsion
  • 12 have been expelled
  • 6 were referred back for further investigation
  • 24 are still awaiting the completion of the NCC process


Of 1,106 complaints received over the ten months or so since April last year, 961 have been resolved – a rate of about eighteen per week – and 145 remain outstanding, of which 115 have been formally suspended. Twenty-four of those cases have been processed as far as the NCC – and should be dealt with shortly as Labour recently increased the number of NCC members significantly.

Quite rightly, Ms Formby and other staff – and even the party leadership – have no influence over the time the quasi-judicial NCC considers necessary to assess the cases before it.

Eighteen cases resolved per week is a good rate of progress to deal with cases properly.

As Jennie Formby told MPs that only the most recent complaints were still outstanding, the 90 or so cases still pending at a level she can affect will be those most recently received.

Of the cases not dismissed immediately, for lack of evidence or because those involved were not Labour members, approximately:

  • one third were cleared
  • one third received a formal warning
  • a fifth were suspended (some may also appear in other categories)
  • one in fourteen quit the party before completion of the disciplinary process
  • six out of seven cases have been resolved and only the most recent are pending

(Figures shown do not add up to exactly 100% because of rounding)

SKWAWKBOX comment:

The most obvious conclusions to draw from the figures are that:

99.9% of Labour members have never been accused of antisemitism
– a huge proportion of claims about ‘Labour’ behaviour doesn’t involve Labour members at all
– around a third of complaints that do involve Labour members are so unfounded that they didn’t stand up to the first level of scrutiny
– Labour’s administration under Jennie Formby has made huge inroads into the issue
– most of the old cases that took a long time to deal with were accumulated on former general secretary Iain McNicol’s watch

None of these obvious conclusions are likely to receive a mention in the so-called ‘mainstream media’.

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  1. Hodge is a fish out of water and the sooner she’s out the party the better.

  2. Whatever the data shows, the decision by the LP to adopt the IHRA definition was ridiculously stupid. How could any right thinking person possibly believe that appeasing the Israeli Lobby by giving them another weapon with which to attack us would do any good whatsoever.

    I’m starting to believe that with our approach to Brexit and AS we have a bunch of confused individuals at LP head office.

  3. Lies; damned lies & ……….MSM! Guilt by accusation is the new PSB norm, but we still have the problem of defining exactly what Anti-Semitism is? IHRA definition adoption by NEC means that any criticism of Israel qualifies as AS. I would be interested to see specific examples of alleged Anti-Semitism in the Labour Party,in order to make an informed judgement on what constitutes Anti-Semitism & which (whose) definition is being used. Perhaps this post is Anti-Semitic, but I just don’t know it?

  4. Yes we are not as portrayed and that is damaging to all concerned including soicety. But as a large organsiation and like any other that deals with important personal issues we have to have training if only at a basic level to be aware of prejudice wherever it hides. It may not be there perniciously but it does hide in some form within ourselves.

  5. One other point to add to the list: how many of the myriad accusations relate to events from before Corbyn was elected leader?

  6. I have no problem with Israelis. My problem lies with the Israeli government’s annexing of Palestinian land and subjugating it’s people.

    1. I have big problems with Israelis who support apartheid Israeli style,and if polls are to be believed,that is a large majority.We will know more when the election result comes in.

      1. My bad. I meant to write: I have no problem with Jews.

        Apologies, that’s what happens when I’m trying to do too many things in a hurry.

  7. I see the ultra-conservative JC’s articles have gone all ‘goebbels school of murdoch/mckenzie style enlightenment’ against the people of Liverpool, nevermind Wavertree.


    I wondered how long it’d take…It’ll be Riverside next. Have you contacted Dan Carden for his take on this latest indignation, skwawky?

    If you haven’t, you should…Riverside next – but don’t expect ellman to bat an eyelid about it if the JC try knocking there, too.


  8. I also not you’ve altered the title of this article.

    Dunno why – 44 allegations for every 1 ‘conviction’ is all too reminiscent of baron Munchausen-esque hyperbole, to me at least.

    So your first time choice of ‘exaggeration’ instead of ‘narrative’ in the headline was the better choice, imo.

    1. D’oh! I’ve just noticed the URL is different to the headline – which still reads ‘exaggeration’.

      My bad.

  9. I am very glad that the society and especially the Labour party take antisemitism seriously and I hope the problem is drastically reduced, if not eliminated. However, I do not understand why prejudice against one religion is taken so seriously (quite rightly) but even more vile prejudice against another religion is almost totally ignored by the society. I am talking about Islam. I hasten to declare that what I am saying is not because of my personal angst: I am an atheist and neither of the two religions has any particular significance to me.
    The really strange thing is that the two religions have so much in common: they believe in the same god, their mythology is the same (think of Adam and eve, sacrifice of his son by Abraham, all the prophets are common to both religions), the Orthodox Muslims and Jews have incredibly similar attitude towards women, I can go on and on.
    So why is it possible for me to say the vilest thing about Islam with impunity but if I said something similar about Judaism I will probably end up in prison. The current massacre of Muslims in the middle east and elsewhere, though not entirely comparable to the Holocaust, does go some way towards making the two comparable.
    So, why don’t we have classifications of what is anti-islamism and why aren’t there hundreds of column inches devoted to defending Islam in our media?

  10. The UK’s Labour Party aren’t the only ones being persecuted by the Israeli Lobby

    “Minnesota Congresswoman Ilhan Omar is under attack for telling the truth about the power of the Israel lobby. …..

    ………..Update: Ilhan Omar “standing strong”
    Throughout Monday, the pressure continued to mount on Ilhan Omar, including from top Democrat, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and the rest of the party’s congressional leadership.
    Echoing other attackers, the party leadership accused Omar of using “anti-Semitic tropes.” “


  11. As I feared – the publication of statistics settles nothing. It was always entirely predictable that the Israel lobby would challenge the data.

    This issue has become so clouded, that I feel that only publication of the detail of accusations and evidence (subject to the protection of identity) will allow the sort of forensic examination that is required.

    Beyond the figures, we actually *know* that some members subjected to disciplinary action have been sanctioned not for ‘antisemitism’ but for criticising he behaviour of Israel and its zionist philosophy.

    The separation of the two issues is absolutely central to dealing with the issue – and, in actuality, real ‘antisemitism’ is quite easy to judge. Which is what the lobby fears.

    1. Just as a rider – I was just listening th ‘5Live’ output ( I kow – my own silly fault).

      The comments on the ‘antisemitism’ ‘problem’ in the Labour were typical – and interesting because of it. The narrative is a ‘taken-for-granted’ one, whereby the ‘problem’ is taken as a fact, and the accusers are automatically supposed to be seriously ‘concerned’.

      This is pretty typical. What you will almost *never* hear is a critical assessment of the validity of the various accusations.

      Of course, some will be justified. but others won’t, but we have no means of validating them – or otherwise.

      The record isn’t a one-way street. Marc Wadsworth was accused of ‘antisemitism’ for an incident that was filmed – and had nothing to do with it. The charge was then downgraded to the catch-all ‘Bringing the Party into disrepute’ – for a far less egregious comment than those made by Margaret Hodge against Corbyn.

      Livingstone was pursued for an anti-zionist comment based on historical fact (the worst that could be said was that it was ill-judged, but certainly not anti-semitic. Jackie Walker remains suspended two years on, simply for making suggestions about inclusiveness in th context of Holocaust remembrance … the list goes on.

      So – it is absolutely vital – not an option – that ‘antisemitism’ is disentangled from the political issues of Zionism if this issue is to go anywhere fruitful.

  12. Is it any wonder that some people have a problem with the Israeli State

    “In which country did a senior, state-salaried cleric urge his followers last month to become “warriors”, emulating a group of young men who had murdered a woman of another faith?
    The cleric did so with impunity. In fact, he was only echoing other highly placed colleagues who have endorsed a book – again without penalty – urging their disciples to murder babies belonging to other religions.
    Where can the head of the clergy call black people “monkeys” and urge the expulsion of other religious communities?
    Where does a clerical elite wield so much power that they alone decide who can marry or get divorced – and are backed by a law that can jail someone who tries to wed without their approval? They can even shut down the national railway system without notice.
    Where are these holy men so feared that women are scrubbed from billboards, college campuses introduce gender segregation to appease them, and women find themselves literally pushed to the back of the bus?
    Is the country Saudi Arabia? Or Myanmar? Or perhaps, Iran?
    No. It is Israel, the world’s only self-declared Jewish state.


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