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Power of words is theme of this year’s Holocaust Memorial Day

An event to mark Holocaust Memorial Day will take place at Stanley Park High School on Friday 26 January.

The principal speaker will be Eve Gill, a survivor of the Holocaust, who will address attendees on this year’s theme of The Power of Words.

The Mayor of Sutton, Cllr Jean Crossby, will also be present at the event, which begins at 10.15am.

Cllr Crossby, Mayor of Sutton, said: “The theme of this year’s Holocaust Memorial Day, The Power of Words, could not be more timely.

“When someone uses the language of hate, it is easy to think that you do not agree; that you condemn their words and reject their ideas. However, for every hate filled word uttered, we need to counter with stronger words of tolerance and love.

“It is more important than ever that we take time to reflect on and learn lessons from the awful events of the past and ensure that we never stand by and allow anything like the Holocaust to happen again.”

The theme of this year’s Holocaust Memorial Day, The Power of Words, explores how language has been used in the past and how it is used in the present day. It focuses on the impact that words had in the Holocaust and subsequent genocides, through propaganda used to incite, through slogans written in resistance, and through memoirs written to record and respond to what was going on. The words that we see and hear all around us today – in newspapers, online, in conversations – the words that we chose to use, all have an impact upon us and those around us.

The annual event takes place on 26 January to mark the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau, the largest and most notorious Nazi concentration camp. Holocaust Memorial Day commemorates all the victims of Nazi persecution and in subsequent genocides in Cambodia, Rwanda, Bosnia and Darfur.

The event will be held at Stanley Park High School and will involve students and young people from schools across the borough.

Other speakers will include Paul Scully MP who will talk about the Rohingya situation in Myanmar and Bangladesh.

Rabbi Shmuli Sagal, Minister of Sutton & District Synagogue, will lead a memorial prayer and minute of silence.

If you would like to attend, please RSVP to Tom Webb (tom.webb@sutton.gov.uk / or 020 8770 4796).