Question S50-03011: To ask the Scottish Government what support it can give toward the annual running costs of the Scottish Jewish heritage centre in Glasgow

20 Mar 2019

John Mason (Glasgow Shettleston) (SNP):

To ask the Scottish Government what support it can give toward the annual running costs of the Scottish Jewish heritage centre in Glasgow. (S5O-03011)

The Cabinet Secretary for Culture, Tourism and External Affairs (Fiona Hyslop):

We value our relationships with our Jewish communities, and the significant and important contributions that those communities make to Scottish society. The Scottish Jewish heritage centre shares in our ambition to promote interfaith dialogue, to strengthen and enhance connections across communities and to lower barriers, eliminate fear and increase understanding. I recognise the importance of learning about the Holocaust as well as taking action to tackle religious prejudice, including antisemitism. I urge the centre to explore with Museums Galleries Scotland museum accreditation and related support. In addition, the next wave of the Scottish Government’s promoting equality and cohesion fund will be open for application in 2020, and I suggest that the centre considers developing an application, in the coming year, for relevant projects.

John Mason:

I thank the cabinet secretary for her encouraging reply. Does she agree with me and, I think, the Jewish community, that there is ignorance not just about the Holocaust but about Jews, Judaism, Jewish history, the Jewish way of life and the considerable Jewish community in Scotland, and that such ignorance can lead to antisemitism, when people do not understand properly?

Fiona Hyslop:

I absolutely agree. The more understanding there is, the greater the tolerance, appreciation—and indeed celebration—of the variety of religions and cultures that we have in Scotland. That is an important part of promoting the positives and explaining the experiences that other people perhaps do not understand. John Mason made the point well.

This exchange can be found here.