Three Rivers District Council marks Holocaust Memorial Day

27th January 2020

The Leader of Three Rivers District Council, Cllr Sara Bedford, and Cllr Debbie Morris raised the Holocaust Memorial Day flag at Three Rivers House on Monday 27 January, together with other councillors and staff. Holocaust Memorial Day marks the remembrance of the people murdered during the Holocaust and subsequent genocides in other countries around the world. 

‘“Today we commemorate the six million Jewish people who were persecuted and murdered in the Holocaust. But we also remember all the other people murdered by the Nazis, and those killed in genocide, or for their beliefs, politics or sexuality before and since. We also recognise the pain felt by survivors and their descendants. 

“Hatred and fear have no place in any country or society. By remembering the past we can aim to create a safer future, ensuring that prejudice and the language of hatred continues to be challenged by us all standing together’ said Cllr Bedford. 

Millions of Jews and other communities including BAME, religious minorities, LGBT+, political opponents and disabled communities were persecuted and murdered during the Holocaust. Subsequent genocides in places including Cambodia, Rwanda, Bosnia and Darfur show that we must continue to resist genocide. 

Cllr Debbie Morris added: “I was privileged to be able to share part of my family’s story today by reading an extract from a letter my late father sent to me.”  

Quoting from the letter, she recited: “Nanny Katten was unable to leave Germany. It was extremely difficult, before the war, to obtain entry visas so she had to go into an old age home. No one believed that the Germans would annihilate the Jews and even go to the extreme lengths of taking elderly Jewish people out of their old age homes and murder them. However, she was forcibly removed to the concentration camp of Therezinstadt. Her death certificate shows she died there on 18 March 1943.”  

The Council is marking the international day by sharing stories on its social media platforms about the Holocaust and other genocides. This 27 January marks the 75th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau, the largest Nazi death camp, and the 25th anniversary of the genocide in Bosnia.