British Jews could be sidelined by possible Sukkot general election

British Jews face the prospect of being unable to attend polling stations if an election is held as predicted on 14 October – the first day of Sukkot.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson appears poised to push for a snap vote if rebel Tories, among them former chancellor Philip Hammond, back legislation designed to block a no-deal Brexit.

They have accused Johnson of risking the destruction of the party and vowed to defy threats of deselection.

The Board of Deputies has asked the government to explain the “concerns and difficulties” facing the Jewish community due to religious observance during the festival.

Vice president Amanda Bowman said: “If a General Election were to be held on Monday 14 October, this would coincide with the festival of Sukkot. This means that, due to religious restrictions, observant Jews would not be able to vote in person or participate on the day.”

While we understand that the situation surrounding Brexit means that there is very little flexibility over dates, we have been in touch with the Government to explain the concerns and difficulties that our community would face. If a General Election is held then, we will be encouraging everyone affected to apply for a postal vote so that their democratic rights are not affected.”


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