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Coventry commemorates Holocaust Memorial Day

Published Wednesday, 20 January 2016

Coventry will join communities across the UK next week to commemorate Holocaust Memorial Day.

Don't Stand By, HMD event - 27 January 2016

HMD has taken place in the UK since 2001, with thousands of activities taking place on or around 27 January each year.

The theme for Holocaust Memorial Day 2016 is “Don’t Stand By” which highlights the fact that apathy or indifference to persecution helps to spread hatred. 

Coventry’s event is taking place in Broadgate, starting at 12.45pm and is open to the public. Go along and show your support and listen to some incredible people tell their stories.

Speakers include Dr Martin Kapel, Kindertransport and Coventry Blitz survivor; Mr Adbulmunem Radwan, a Syrian Refugee; Jessamy Morris-Davis, Vice Chair of Coventry Pride; Martin Reeves, Chief Executive of the Council; and The Lord Mayor of Coventry, Councillor Michael Hammon. 

Martin Reeves said: “Coventry is a city that has taken a pro-active attitude regarding refugees and asylum seekers from all around the world and I am very proud of that. We as a city and as individuals need to be brave and not simply stand by. Please join us in Broadgate for this thought-provoking and challenging event.”

Lord Mayor, Councillor Michael Hammon, added: “Coventry is a city of Peace and Reconciliation and we believe in equality for everyone. It is a city where all communities play a vital part and one that is known around the world for its work in bringing people together in friendship. The stories told here will reinforce these commitments both personally and as a city.” 

There will also be music by the Performing Art Service Brass Quintet.

The event will finish at approximately 1.30pm, but people are then invited to the Lord Mayor’s Hospitality Suite in the Council House at 2.30pm to hear Dr Martin Kapel speak more about his family and early life in Coventry. 

The Holocaust and subsequent genocides took place because the local populations allowed persecution to take root.

While some actively supported or took part in state policies of persecution, the vast majority stood by silently – at best, afraid to speak out, at worst, indifferent. Bystanders enabled the Holocaust, Nazi persecution and subsequent genocides. 

Don’t Stand By, come and join us! 

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