Higher education boycotts 1

Meeting:

Mayor's Question Time

Date:

Wednesday, 26 February 2014

Reference:

Question 2014/1007

Main question

Andrew Dismore

Further to your holding answer to Question 2014/0240, Will you now give a substantive reply to "In view of the importance to London's economy of the higher education sector, what do you consider the consequences for the success of that sector to be, of the growing trend for student unions to pass anti-Israel academic and/or economic boycott motions?"


Answer

The Mayor

London is a wonderfully diverse city and I am committed to tackling discrimination in London. Universities, higher education institutions, and further education colleges and institutions, have clear legal obligations under the provisions of the Equality Act 2010, to prevent activities from taking place on campus that could potentially discriminate against, harass or victimise others. Similarly, student unions must also consider whether their organised activities are perceived as discriminatory, or in breach of the service provisions of the Act.

 

London is home to over 45 HEIs, which are an important part of London’s economy. Not only do they aid physical regeneration in various parts of the city, including the Olympic Park, and attract international students, they are the home to world-leading research and development, which attracts FDI and underpins London’s status as a global science hub.

 

Israel remains a vibrant, democratic economy and a great source of academic research and knowledge and I condemn any one-sided boycott.