This week is Holocaust Education Week. It is an opportunity to take personal and collective responsibility to learn about the lessons of the past. With an exponential rise in antisemitism around the world and here at home, we have seen an alarming increase in online and in-person attacks against Canada’s Jewish community, including in health care and educational settings.
The Canadian Medical Association (CMA) condemns antisemitism and all forms of societal racism against religious, racialized and minority groups. The expression of anti-Jewish hatred in medical schools and other health care settings has created an environment of fear and intimidation. Medical learners, faculty and practising physicians must be able to learn, teach and care for patients in a physically, psychologically and culturally safe environment.
To address equity and diversity in medicine and to improve circumstances and opportunities for all, we must call out antisemitic behaviours. We must take the necessary steps within health systems and learning environments to condemn and protect those who seek to learn, teach and care for others.
The recent incidents of antisemitism underscore the critical importance of education on the lessons of the Holocaust – one of the darkest chapters in history. There has never been a more important time to support Canada’s Jewish community and to stand together against antisemitism. Let’s state with conviction: Never Again.
Dr. Katharine Smart, CMA President