UKLFI: Supporting Israel with legal skills

Croydon Council warned it may breach law if Wiley plays in Croydon Park festival

Croydon Council may be in breach of their public sector equality duty if they allow the musician Wiley to perform at the “Festival in the Park” in Addington Park, which is owned by the Council. UKLFI has written to Croydon Council requesting that they do not allow the concert to go ahead if the musician Wiley is included. The festival is due to take place on Saturday 16 September 2023.

 Wiley, whose real name is Richard Kylea Cowie, is a musician with a history of provocative and distasteful antisemitic remarks.

  • In July 2020 the Guardian reported[1] that Wiley had posted antisemitic tweets, likening Jews to the Ku Klux Klan, claiming “Israel is ours” referring to the black community, and advancing an antisemitic trope that Jewish people control business interests.

  • He was banned from Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and YouTube in July 2020 for his antisemitic comments.

  • He was suspended again for Instagram and Twitter over further antisemitic comments in December 2021 after posting a video about Satanic Jews and harassing an anti-racism campaigner.[2]

  • His posts also suggested black people were exploited, historically and in the music industry, by Jews in these purported positions of power.[3]

  • In August 2020, Wiley was suspended from YouTube[4] and TikTok.[5]

  • Wiley also broadcast live on Instagram, discussing banks owned by “Jewish families” and “speculating that maybe Jews do in fact control the world,” according to Campaign Against Antisemitism.

UKLFI’s letter refers Croydon Council to s.149 of the Equality Act 2010[6] which states that public authorities must, in the exercise of their functions, have due regard to the need to—

(a) eliminate discrimination, harassment, victimisation and any other conduct that is prohibited by or under this Act;

(b) advance equality of opportunity between persons who share a relevant protected characteristic and persons who do not share it;

(c) foster good relations between persons who share a relevant protected characteristic and persons who do not share it.

Caroline Turner, director of UKLFI said: “Wiley has been unrepentant for his antisemitic outbursts. If he performs at this concert, he will be given an opportunity to make further antisemitic statements.  This will promote discrimination, harassment and victimisation of Jews.  Allowing Wiley to perform does not foster good relations between people of different religions and faiths.”

UKLFI has asked Croydon to ensure that the concert will not include the musician Wiley.  We await a response from Croydon Council.