In January 2017, PCS (Public and Commercial Services) Union held their first Newcastle branch events for Holocaust Memorial Day (HMD), led by the regional LGBT network. They displayed the Anne Frank Trust's exhibition, Anne Frank: A History for Today, for two of their Newcastle branches: HMRC Benton Park View and the PCS Regional Office. The exhibition explores Anne's short life against the background of the Holocaust and World War Two. It encourages discussion about why the Frank family and others were forced to leave their homes to find refuge in Holland and further afield, linking well with the HMD 2017 theme of How can life go on?
Over the course of two days, more than 40 members of HMRC staff viewed the exhibition at Benton Park View. For the main event on Holocaust Memorial Day, 27 January, visitors from UNITE and other unions, as well as staff and PCS union members, joined together to watch films from the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust (HMDT) website and shared a buffet of Challah, a traditional Jewish bread, and the Rwandan dish Ibirayi n'amashaza. These recipes were taken from HMDT’s recipe cards, sharing dishes important to communities targeted during genocide.
Simon Elliot from PCS who helped organise the event said:
‘Our union’s LGBT network were keen to organise an event this year to mark Holocaust Memorial Day, and were delighted to have access to the fantastic Anne Frank Exhibition. The event went so well, we are already planning for next year, and discussing booking speakers well in advance to make the day even more interesting for visitors’.