Fredericton (October 5, 2023) - Last night, Friends of Simon Wiesenthal Center (FSWC) President and CEO Michael Levitt was honoured with the Atlantic Human Rights Centre Award for Excellence in Human Rights at St. Thomas University in Fredericton, New Brunswick.
The award is in recognition of Levitt’s longstanding commitment to human rights, freedom and democracy and his work promoting their importance, both in his capacity as the head of FSWC and as a former Member of Parliament.
Based at St. Thomas University, the Atlantic Human Rights Centre develops multidisciplinary teaching and research in the area of human rights at the regional, national and international levels. Among its wide range of activities is the annual Dr. Bernie Vigod Memorial Lecture in Human Rights that over the years has featured such speakers as Rosalie Abella, Romeo Dallaire and Irwin Cotler.
The award was given to Levitt following his presentation on Examining the Rising Tide of Antisemitism in Canada at the university's 2023 Dr. Bernie Vigod Memorial Lecture in Human Rights, delivered to some 300 students, faculty members and members of the local Jewish community.
"I am incredibly honoured to have received this award from the Atlantic Human Rights Centre and for having the opportunity to deliver a lecture at St. Thomas University that examines the important issue of rising antisemitism and where it's most pervasive today, with a special focus on online antisemitism and its real-world consequences, both in Canada and around the world," said Levitt. "As we see hatred targeting Jews continue to rear its ugly head, whether through Holocaust denial, age-old conspiracy theories or acts of violence, it's important to understand its roots, history and the ways it manifests itself today in order to combat it."
"I thank St. Thomas University and its Atlantic Human Rights Centre for giving me the opportunity to join a long list of distinguished human rights advocates who were lecturers in years past, in honour of the legacy and memory of Dr. Bernie Vigod, who was such a widely respected champion of human rights."