AASUA Declaration on International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance's Working Definition of Antisemitism

February 11, 2021, Council Meeting

AASUA recognizes and endorses the need for attention to the rights of marginalized and oppressed peoples and commitment to working to support those rights. The AASUA opposes antisemitism, islamophobia, and all forms of religious discrimination, racism and hatred.

The International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s Working Definition of Antisemitism *, in our view, poses a serious threat to our anti-racist initiatives and our work to implement the Truth & Reconciliation Commission calls to action in thoughtful, meaningful and sustainable ways at the University of Alberta and within AASUA. The IHRA definition of antisemitism misconstrues antisemitism to include a broad range of criticism of the State of Israel. The IHRA definition thus undermines important anti-racist and decolonial initiatives in Canadian educational institutions. It can also be used to censor political speech and restrict the academic freedom of teachers and researchers who have developed critical perspectives on the policies and practices of the State of Israel. Such targeted attacks will have a negative effect on the academic freedom of our members in the classroom, in their research, and in campus politics more broadly.

“Antisemitism is a certain perception of Jews, which may be expressed as hatred toward Jews. Rhetorical and physical manifestations of antisemitism are directed toward Jewish or non-Jewish individuals and/or their property, toward Jewish community institutions and religious facilities.”

CAUT adopts the following resolution:

November 26, 2021, CAUT Council Meeting

Tim Mills, Acting AASUA President, presented the following resolution that was passed unanimously:


BE IT RESOLVED THAT CAUT opposes the adoption of IHRAWDA at Canadian universities and colleges. CAUT supports the academic freedom of its members and recognizes the need to safeguard the rights of scholars to develop critical perspectives on all states, including the state of Israel, without fear of outside political influence, cuts to funding, censorship, harassment, threats, and intimidation.

Read the entire resolution here