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Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Are we meant to stand aside and watch while the institutions that have enabled abusers are allowed to remain as they are without suffering the appropriate repercussions for their malfeasance?

The Child Victims Act was signed into law by Gov. Cuomo on Feb. 14

For the Sake of Our Children


It is impossible to properly describe the horrors unleashed on the victims of child sexual abuse. Those horrors will likely haunt the victims for the rest of their lives. 

Unfortunately, some sectors of the Jewish community have turned a blind eye to these victims. This attitude is seemingly apparent in a statement issued by the Agudath Israel of America, which noted the organization’s disapproval of the recent passage of the Child Victims Act in the New York State Legislature.

Signed into law by Gov. Cuomo on Feb. 14, the Child Victims Act raised the statute of limitations on child sexual abuse crimes from age 23 to 55 in civil cases. The statute of limitations for bringing a suit against a public or private institution that hired an abuser will also be moved from age 23 to 55. In addition, under the new law, criminal charges may be brought against an abuser until the victim reaches the age of 28.

The Agudah’s primary concern with the Child Victims Act is that “the unprecedented ability to revive decades-old claims in civil suits could jeopardize the ongoing viability of schools, houses of worship that sponsor youth programs, summer camps and other institutions that are the very lifeblood of communities like ours.”

The new law may turn out to be a dilemma for Yeshiva University. In 2013, a lawsuit of $680 million was brought against the university for its alleged enabling of multiple child abusers in Yeshiva University High School for Boys over the course of several decades. The suit was struck down by a federal judge because “the statutes of limitations have expired.” The enactment of the Child Victims Act would potentially allow the victims to revivify their suit against the university.

The Agudah’s statement misses a crucial point. The jeopardization of institutions that have enabled abusers will be beneficial for the Jewish people in the long-run. With the enactment of the Child Victims Act into law, these institutions will be more introspective with regard to their employment policies. They will be more reluctant to hire an individual with a spotty record out of concern for future civil lawsuits against them. In addition, if some institutions are sued out of existence, other institutions will surely fill their place and fulfill their functions for the Jewish community, this time without enabling sexual abusers.

The defenders of the Agudah’s statement may counter my argument with the following question: “What about an institution that changed its leadership over the course of several decades? Did the abuse not occur under different management? How can one be enabled to sue the current management of an institution for the misconduct of their predecessors?”

I sympathize with this argument. Children should not be punished for the sins of their fathers. However, why don’t we ask the converse of the Agudah’s argument: What about an institution that has not substantially changed its leadership over the past few decades? Why should a childhood victim of sexual abuse — who for whatever reason, be it trauma or fear, waited to report the abuse — be restricted from bringing a suit against the enablers of his abuser? 

For this reason, the law is restricted to the introduction of a lawsuit to court, and not of the adjudication thereof. Adjudication is fully up to the judges’ or juries’ discretions. This requires a certain level of confidence among the masses that the judicial system will recognize the difference between an institution that is currently comprised of enablers versus one that is not. Nevertheless, at the end of the day, what is the alternative? 

Are we meant to stand aside and watch while the institutions that have enabled abusers are allowed to remain as they are without suffering the appropriate repercussions for their malfeasance? It is, therefore, absolutely necessary for us to enthusiastically support the passage of the Child Victims Act, for the sake of the Jewish people, for the sake of our children.

https://yucommentator.org/2019/02/for-the-sake-of-our-children/

Monday, February 18, 2019

"It is well known that these accusing parents just hate rabbis and don't really care about their children's welfare at all, and would destroy their own kids and drag their families through the mud just for the sake of making rabbis look bad", according to Rosenblum's sources in the ultra-orthodox Jewish community.





Monday, June 15, 2009 - UOJ CLASSICS


 

Ultra-Religious Catholic Journalist Interviews Three Priests About The Catholic Church's Involvement Of Child Sexual Abuse!

by John O'Futzyutz

When I sat down with these three American priests who are well versed in the English language, I was really taken in by their knowledge of Scripture as it relates to the "in-topic" of today, child molestation by the Catholic clergy. The focus quickly shifted to their "older cousins", the Jews, particularly rabbis, for reasons unknown to them, covered up child sexual abuse in their Hebrew schools, summer camps, and houses of worship.

Now I know these three priests well, they would have no reason to change the subject; they are smart, they grew up in orthodox Catholic homes, and clearly believe the Pope as the infallible messenger of god and the other two parts of god's cosmic makeup, Spirit and Son. The pope would never, for example, apologize for child-abuse by thousands of priests, if he was not really sorry. He is so sorry that he moved the "Lipa Margulies" of the Church, Cardinal Bernard Law, to the Vatican, as one of the pope's right hand people. In matter of fact, my Catholic antennae was pricked by this bold decision, borrowing this phrase with permission from my friend, a Jewish journalist in the Jerusalem Post, Jonathan Rosenblum.

The English speaking priests certainly convinced me that they have no reason at all to go against the pope's unambiguous message; if you are ever in doubt about the sexual proclivities of a priest, or about a Cardinal moving priests around from parish to parish; rather than call the police, send him to Rome, they have a great job for him with a lot of different multi-colored hats and shmattes. If you are dumb enough to get caught, deny that any priest ever molested a child, if pressed really hard by an "Enlightened one", say, "yeah, we found out about one who slipped through our fingers, and no we do not sweep or sell rugs, we are not merchants -- but if another child molester does exist, the police may be called, maybe, and only if he is retired, dead, homeless, hard of hearing, does not have a cellphone, and wears a yarmulke".

So that's that, the Pope Hador speaks, the priests listen, we know all that, right?

Wondering what was going on with the Jews, now that I got the alleged priest problem out of the way, I contacted my fellow Yale schoolmate, Jonathan Rosenblum, who I understand became the drugged mouthpiece for ultra-orthodox Jews, especially in Israel.

Jonathan tells me a very similar kind of strange goings-on in the Ramat Bet Shemesh town, a suburb of Jerusalem. He spoke as well to three rabbis (something the Jews and Catholics have in common the number three as in Trinity, as in upsherin, as in moving on Tuesday - yom shlishi (ki tov twice plus one on yom rishon) three portions of cholent at kiddush, three main dishes at Pesach hotels, three dunks in the mikve, 3 deserts at the Agudah Convention, 3 crooked rabbis for a bais din tribunal, shnayim mikra v'echad targum =3, minimum donation to Margo's mezumen slush fund for Kolko =$3000, 3 Fressers needed for a mezumen at birkat hamazon) --- in that town, and was assured that these parents who claim to have had their child molested in a Hebrew school, was a bunch of cholent poop. Why would these English speaking rabbis lie? What do they have to gain? They care only about the well-being of their congregants and the Jewish community, just like the English speaking rabbis in the U.S.A. They even remember that they asked people to leave town, they can't be sure why, but probably because they molested someone. They even invited an Ohel employee, Dr. Schulman, to address the community on how to mitigate damages from families whose children were allegedly abused by rabbis in schools.

"In 1996, the Village Voice ["A Child's at Stake," by Adam Fifield and Michael Lesher] reported that an Ohel advisory board member, Susan Schulman, commented that she always deferred to rabbinic advice before making a child-abuse report, although she acknowledged that she 'could be arrested' for doing so." [Emphasis added.] This is what's coming to Ramat Bet Shemesh!

And this quote really tickled my fancy; "It is well known that these accusing parents just hate rabbis and don't really care about their children's welfare at all, and would destroy their own kids and drag their families through the mud just for the sake of making rabbis look bad", according to Rosenblum's sources in the ultra-orthodox Jewish community.

In matter of fact Jonathan said, the Jewish pope, so to speak, the greatest rabbi of the generation (96 years young and even remembers his name without a teleprompter), who is schooled in every single area of humanity, decreed that only if rabbis believe child molestation took place, after many meetings by the local rabbis, and a unanimous decision by all the rabbis and zonas in town, and the child is screened by their handpicked Orthodox therapists, with a degree or not, then if none of these people ever used a cell-phone without a hechsher, or shopped in a store without a kosher certificate on all the women's clothing, or sat on a bus where women and men are not separated by a shower curtain, then one may be permitted to go to a shomer Shabbos police station, where every police person eats Rubashkin glatt kosher meat that is not cooked in a Heinemann Kitchen Aid kosher Yom-Tov oven and whose wives do not wear wigs from India.

Now, Jonathan and I go back a long way; I felt ashamed that I would have to ask him this question, but a good journalist must be thorough.

"Jonathan, and when you met with the alleged molested children and their parents, what exactly did they tell you?"

"Well John", he said, "after taking to the three rabbis, why would I need to talk to the victims and their parents?"

In fact Rosenblum permitted me to use his quote in the Jerusalem Post as the new "gospel" for the Jewish community.....

"The rabbis' preference for working behind the scenes derives not from a desire to sweep problems under the rug, but from a considered philosophy about what is best for victims, their families and the community. What is best for victims he said, the knowledge that incidents will be publicized can keep victims or their parents from coming forward. In addition, publicity can lead to hysteria in which parents become convinced that their children are at great risk in school.

Now, even me being a "Goy" knows this is the new lying Shafran-Schick-Salomon limerick coming from the Torah Giants of America, certainly expected to make a huge splash to the English and Yiddish speaking members of the Jewish community worldwide. Perhaps it may even wind up in a radio commercial.

Jonathan, even the Goyim are ashamed of you!

READ 121 comments:

http://theunorthodoxjew.blogspot.com/2009/06/ultra-religious-catholic-journalist.html

Sunday, February 17, 2019

I Had To Prevail To Get The Victims Of Abuse To Tell Their Stories. The Court Ruled In My Favor...And Here We Are!


Wednesday, July 14, 2010 - UOJ ARCHIVES


EFF Urges Court to Block Dragnet Subpoenas Targeting Online Commenters!

http://www.eff.org/cases/hersh-v-cohen
http://www.eff.org/press/archives/2010/07/13


July 14th, 2010

New York - The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) this week served a motion to quash dragnet subpoenas that put privacy and anonymity at risk for the operators of dozens of Internet blogs and potentially hundreds of commenters.

The subpoenas stem from a state lawsuit filed by New York residents Miriam and Michael Hersh alleging a conspiracy to interfere with their business interests. Issued to Google and Yahoo, the subpoenas demand the identities of users of ten email accounts, operators of 30 blogs and a website that had featured discussions of the plaintiffs among other matters, and the identities of everyone who had ever commented on those sites.

"The First Amendment protects individuals' right to speak anonymously and forces litigants to justify any attempts to unmask anonymous critics," said EFF Senior Staff Attorney Matt Zimmerman. "Litigants cannot forcibly identify entire communities of online speakers -- which include many speakers who no one would claim did anything wrong -- simply because the litigants are curious."

In the motion served on Monday, EFF urged the Supreme Court for Kings County, New York, to quash the subpoenas for failing to satisfy the requirements imposed by the First Amendment, as well as the requirements imposed by New York state law and the federal Stored Communications Act.

"Overbroad subpoenas targeting anonymous speakers without cause naturally creates a chilling effect that may discourage others from exercising their constitutional rights to participate in conversations that take place online," said Zimmerman. "We are asking the court to enforce these reasonable safeguards so that the rights of innocent speakers do not become collateral damage in a dispute between others."

Ron Lazebnik and the Samuelson-Glushko Intellectual Property & Information Law Clinic at Fordham University School of Law assisted EFF in the serving of this motion.

For the full motion to quash & court granting request:
https://www.eff.org/document/motion-quash-0
https://www.eff.org/files/filenode/hersh_v_cohen/uoj-order-012111.pdf
https://www.eff.org/cases/hersh-v-cohen


Thursday, February 14, 2019

Child Victims Act signed into law by New York Governor Andrew Cuomo




Gov. Andrew Cuomo is signing legislation that would extend the statute of limitations so sexual abuse victims have more time to seek criminal charges or sue their abusers.

It is happening at an event in lower Manhattan.

In addition to giving molestation victims more time to sue their alleged abusers or seek criminal charges, the law will open a one-year window for lawsuits now barred by the statute of limitations.

The measure was blocked for the past decade by Republicans who controlled the state Senate.

Democrats took control of the chamber in the November elections, and the Senate and Democrat-controlled Assembly approved the legislation last month.




https://abc7ny.com/politics/live-cuomo-signs-child-victims-act-into-law/5138444/

They allege Shvarblat approached the girl four more times, each time offering her cigarettes, police said. On Jan. 22, Shvarblat followed the girl into the ACME and asked her if she wanted to go into his vehicle and smoke a cigarette, Hintze said.

Lakewood Man Charged With Stalking Girl, 16: Police 

 

Police say the man approached the girl repeatedly, in one case saying, 'Hey, sexy, do you want a cigarette?'




Lakewood Man Charged With Stalking Girl, 16: Police
וואָס וועט זיין מיט די פּערווערץ?
FORT LEE, NJ —A Lakewood man has been charged with stalking a 16-year-old girl repeatedly in recent weeks and offering her cigarettes, police said Wednesday.

Chayim Shvarzblat, aka Michael Shvarzblat, 32, of Lakewood, was charged with stalking and providing cigarettes to a juvenile, Capt. Matthew Hintze of the Fort Lee Police Department said.
Shvarblat is accused of approaching the victim near Fort Lee High School five times between Jan. 7 and Feb. 5, Hintze said.


Authorities allege Shvarblat first approached the girl Jan. 7 at the ACME supermarket adjacent to the high school when she was on her lunch break. He drove up to the girl and asked her, "Hey sexy, do you want a cigarette?" Hintze said. The girl later told police she ignored the man and went back to school.

They allege Shvarblat approached the girl four more times, each time offering her cigarettes, police said. On Jan. 22, Shvarblat followed the girl into the ACME and asked her if she wanted to go into his vehicle and smoke a cigarette, Hintze said.

The girl reported the incidents to her principal Jan. 31. The school contacted police, who began investigating.

On Feb. 4, the girl and her mother were driving to school when they saw Shvarblat sitting in his vehicle, a 2015 Hyundai Sonata, in the George Washington Bridge Plaza facing the ACME parking lot, Hintze said.

The girl called police and the next day police saw the vehicle in the plaza and stopped it, Hintze said. Shvarbalt is due in Bergen County Superior Court March 12, he said.

“While it is unfortunate that this occurred, it is a good example of a teenager telling an adult in school what occurred and then the school staff working closely with the school resource officers,” Police Chief Keith Bendul said 

Anyone who might have had a similar encounter with Shvarzblat or has information that would help the investigation is asked to contact Detective Jesus Sanchez at (201) 592-3700, ext. 5302 or at jsanchez@fortleepolice.org .


וואָס וועט זיין מיט די קינדער? 
https://patch.com/new-jersey/lakewood-nj/lakewood-man-charged-stalking-girl-16-police?utm_source=alert-breakingnews&utm_medium=email&utm_term=weather&utm_campaign=alert



Wednesday, February 13, 2019

An investigation by The Wall Street Journal and the PBS series Frontline found the IHS repeatedly missed or ignored warning signs, tried to silence whistleblowers and allowed Mr. Weber to continue treating children despite the suspicions of colleagues up and down the chain of command.

A Pedophile Doctor Drew Suspicions for 21 Years. No One Stopped Him.

The federal government’s Indian Health Service failed to protect Native American boys from Pat Weber’s sexual abuse, despite repeated warning signs

This article is a joint investigation between Frontline PBS and The Wall Street Journal. A related documentary aired Feb. 12 on PBS.
 
At first, officials at the U.S. Indian Health Service overlooked the peculiarities of their unmarried new doctor, including the children’s toys he hoarded in his basement on the reservation. They desperately needed a pediatrician at their hospital in Browning, Mont.

By 1995, after three years, they became convinced Stanley Patrick Weber was a pedophile and pushed for his removal from the government-run hospital.

“You’re going to have to leave,” Randy Rottenbiller, its clinical director at the time, recalled telling the doctor after learning a child patient had stayed the night in his house.

Many of his known and alleged victims have since struggled with addiction and have moved in and out of prison. As boys, they were especially vulnerable and troubled. They lived in some of America’s poorest communities, isolated and desolate places where health problems are rampant and basic services such as grocery stores are scarce.

An investigation by The Wall Street Journal and the PBS series Frontline found the IHS repeatedly missed or ignored warning signs, tried to silence whistleblowers and allowed Mr. Weber to continue treating children despite the suspicions of colleagues up and down the chain of command. 

The investigation also found that the agency tolerated a number of problem doctors because it was desperate for medical staff, and that managers there believed they might face retaliation if they followed up on suspicions of abuse. The federal agency has long been criticized for providing inadequate care to Native Americans.

After a tribal prosecutor outside of the IHS finally investigated his crimes, Mr. Weber was indicted in 2017 and 2018 for sexually assaulting six patients in Montana and South Dakota. Court documents and interviews with former patients show that Mr. Weber plied teen boys with money, alcohol and sometimes opioids, and coerced them into oral and anal sex with him in hospital exam rooms and at his government housing unit.

“IHS, the local here, they want to just forget it happened,” said Pauletta Red Willow, a social-services worker on the Pine Ridge reservation. “You can’t ever forget how someone did our children wrong and affected us for generations to come.”

In an interview, Rear Adm. Michael Weahkee,  an officer in the U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps and the acting head of the IHS, expressed sorrow over the agency’s failures and promised an investigation into how Mr. Weber was able to prey on children under the agency’s care.

“We really want to mitigate the possibility of anything like this ever happening again,” said Adm. Weahkee.....


READ ENTIRE ARTICLE AND VIEW DOCUMENTARY:

https://www.wsj.com/articles/a-pedophile-doctor-drew-suspicions-for-21-years-no-one-stopped-him-11549639961?mod=djemalertNEWS

Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Rabbi Berland’s representatives said “it is well known that tzedakah can save from death and people pledge to give tzedakah”, but denied he asked for money from what they said were “hundreds and thousands who have been saved by the rabbis’ blessings.”

  "The Energizer Krazzy" --- Chasidic rabbi accused of accepting cash to bless terminally ill patients in Israeli hospitals

 

Eliezer Berland allegedly offered his services in exchange for 20,000 shekels




Rabbi Eliezer Berland, pictured here in in 2016 as he is led into court by police for his trial on sexual assault charges
Rabbi Eliezer Berland, pictured here in in 2016 as he is led into court by police for his trial on sexual assault charges 

The leader of a powerful Chasidic sect in Jerusalem has been accused of extorting money from the families of terminally ill patients in exchange for a rabbinical blessing. 

Rabbi Eliezer Berland, 81, who heads the Shuvu Banim sect of Breslov Chasidim in Jerusalem, allegedly offered his services in exchange for 20,000 shekels (£4,250) to the relatives of patients in a vegetative state in Israeli hospitals.

He previously served jail time after being convicted of indecent acts and assault.

During the hospital visits, which were recorded on security cameras and obtained by Israel’s Channel 12, Rabbi Berland is heard demanding the money for pidyon nefesh (“redemption of the soul”).
In their desperation, some families reportedly accepted.

His representatives have denied the allegations, but videos have previously been published of him online blessing patients alongside a phone number to call.

Rabbi Berland fled Israel in 2012 after police began investigating accusations that he sexually assaulting women in the Shuvu Banim Sect. 

After spending several years on the run in Morocco, Zimbabwe, the Netherlands and South Africam he was finally extradited in 2016 to Israel, where he convicted on two counts of indecent acts and one of assault and sentenced to eighteen months in prison. 

But the sentence was cut short after only six months because Rabbi Breslov was diagnosed with bowel cancer. 

Some Breslov sect rabbis signed petitions calling for his followers to shun him, but other Strictly Orthodox have continued to back him. 

Despite his diagnosis, Rabbi Berland still retains thousands of followers and remains influential in Charedi politics. 

In 2017, he was visited in prison by Deputy Health Minister Yaakov Litzman.

Since his release, he has held meetings with United Torah Judaism’s Deputy Education Minister Meir Porush and senior representatives of Shas, including Rabbi Shimon Baadani, a member of its Council of Torah Sages. 

In the recent local elections in Jerusalem, Rabbi Berland openly supported Moshe Leon, the candidate of Shas and Degel Ha’Torah, who went on to win in the second round.  

Following the Channel 12 revelations, the Health Ministry said the promises and payments were a matter for the police.

Yaakov Litzman, the deputy minister, denied having any knowledge of them and said it was the hospitals managements duty to report them. 

Rabbi Berland’s representatives said “it is well known that tzedakah can save from death and people pledge to give tzedakah”, but denied he asked for money from what they said were “hundreds and thousands who have been saved by the rabbis’ blessings.”  




Sunday, February 10, 2019

So the Agudath Israel and their pathetic group of bozos...all of them knew; but did they? Did they know that they would be dragged through the filth they created - forever and forever? Did they really know the damage that would last forever...and did they care? Of course not, the bloggers are nasty people! Horrors! Lashon hara! Mesirah! Let's change the subject - ban the Internet!

Let's Change The Subject!

THE UOJ ARCHIVES  - ORIGINALLY POSTED MARCH 2006

CLICK ON IMAGES TO ENLARGE:




All my efforts were for naught. Margulies and Kolko were digging in...and nothing they were being told - meant anything! I had used every ounce of energy attempting to persuade his go-betweens, and there were many, that none of his tactics were going to work. He was either going to bais din immediately, or I was going to take him down! The "Torah" world was warned through an intermediary, nay, many intermediaries.

Torah Umesorah knew! The Agudath Israel knew! The entire Torah Temimah hanhala and the board of directors knew. Sruli Belsky knew! It was no secret, I made certain that they had every opportunity to do right for the many victims, the Torah prescribed dictates of treasuring human life, and for Klal Yisroel! It was time to stand up and admit to a fatally flawed policy by the "gedolim" - that destroyed generations. The whole world knew...but nobody cared!

It was time to beg forgiveness...way past the time - where elaborate yeshiva buildings took precedence to preserving the treasured neshamot entrusted to their care!

But....as I learned over my life...there's nobody home!

They don't give a darn! They laugh at the thought that the children really matter. Of course not, they're just inventory in their warehouses. A number in a bakery line...a meal ticket to riches and real estate holdings.

I agonized...I knew exactly where this was going to wind up. I was already in contact with the media. Jeff Herman was lined up! One last shot...issue the hazmana from a successful attorney that specializes in clergy sex-abuse cases. All - Kleinman, Applegrad and Weinberger, yes George, had to do - was google Jeff Herman. See what he's done and undone! Please be afraid - please!

They did not care...at that point neither did I. I retained TWO respected toenim to represent the victims in bais din on March 16...one week before the hazmana was sent and faxed, just in case I was wrong! I hoped I was wrong! The victims deserved the best representation money could buy. They deserved no less, finally! The Heavens finally broke down and cried with the victims! But not the gedolim...they were at dinners! They were busy....who cared what some crazy was doing on the Internet. We'll hold asifas and ban him!

I shot the first bullet....they went scrambling to various people but not to bais din. Belsky said NO! I sent more messages....nothing! I fired off the second hazmana from an attorney that specializes in clergy sex-abuse cases...not a dumb putz rabbi that they could get Belsky or Epstein to threaten! A real lawyer with experience in this area! Collected millions for victims! Please be afraid - please!

I fired the third hazmana....nothing, they gave Jeff Herman the finger.

I was ready...Jeff was ready...Robert Kolker (New York Magazine) was ready....Margulies had one more chance. Fire Kolko pending a full competent investigation and real din Torah! No dice...he was putting Kolko on temporary leave,.... maybe!

As they say, the rest is in the history books!

So the Agudath Israel and their pathetic group of bozos...all of them knew; but did they? Did they know that they would be dragged through the filth they created - forever and forever? Did they really know the damage that would last forever...and did they care? Of course not, the bloggers are nasty people! Horrors! Lashon hara! Mesirah! Let's change the subject - ban the Internet! We'll get "Tzvi Frankel" to bash the bloggers...all of them!

I will never let you change the subject - NEVER! Do you hear me now? Do you?

To all of you "gedolim" I say...I'm far from done with you criminals. I'm just getting warmed up!

 READ THE COMMENTS AND THE ORIGINAL POST:

http://theunorthodoxjew.blogspot.com/2007/12/lets-change-subject.html

386 comments:

Friday, February 08, 2019

When the Agudah, and other faith leaders try to protect the image of the community, they are inevitably sacrificing the well-being of individual victims. They would do better to call out abuse as and when it occurs, encourage their communities to report abuse to the relevant authorities, and make their communities havens for survivors, not abusers.

#ItsNotOK: The community’s response can hurt more than the abuse



From the 4th to the 10th of February, police forces, local authorities, third sector workers, activists and individuals across the UK will mark Sexual Abuse and Sexual Violence Awareness Week. This year, the awareness week will coincide with New York’s Governor Cuomo signing the long awaited Child Victims Act into law. 

The Child Victims Act will now enable New York citizens to bring criminal charges against their abusers for longer than ever before, and also raises the civil statute of limitations for all sexual abuse claims to age 55. It removes the 30-day notice of claim requirement for civil cases brought against public institutions, and it opens a one-year lookback window starting six months after the bill is signed into law, during which time any civil case whose statute of limitations has already passed can file suit in civil court against their abusers, or any party responsible for enabling or protecting their abusers.

For years, Agudath Israel of America joined the Catholic Church in an unholy alliance, lobbying strategically to prevent the bill from becoming law. Both institutions feared the financial repercussions that the bill would have. I expect they knew that their respective organisations or organisations that they represented were likely to be sued.

The Agudah’s press release in reaction to the bill passing makes their position clear:

… we opposed aspects of the Child Victims Act, out of concern that the unprecedented ability to revive decades-old claims in civil suits could jeopardize the ongoing viability of schools, houses of worship that sponsor youth programs, summer camps and other institutions that are the very lifeblood of communities like ours. That concern remains.”

This statement was sandwiched between platitudes around their awareness of how much pain is caused by sexual abuse.

What neither the Agudah nor the Catholic Church nor the Boys Scouts (who also lobbied against the bill) (choose to) understand is that it is their actions that cause the most pain. Abusers will crop up in any society; it is the community response to that abuse that will determine whether they will be able to abuse further. In my experience, the communal enabling of sexual abuse is more harmful than the abuse itself. When the Agudah, and other faith leaders try to protect the image of the community, they are inevitably sacrificing the well-being of individual victims. They would do better to call out abuse as and when it occurs, encourage their communities to report abuse to the relevant authorities, and make their communities havens for survivors, not abusers.

In a 1996 paper entitled, The Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children: A Jewish Perspective, JOFA’s founder, Blu Greenberg, comments on the way in which Torah She’bichsav, the Written Law, juxtaposes rules about mundane functions and holy rituals. She notes that there is no literary separation between ethical law and religious law. For example, the laws around building a fence at the edge of your roof (to keep people safe) are right next to the prohibition against mixing various fibres when weaving them and different species when planting them. The law forbidding the sexual exploitation of one’s daughter is right after the law forbidding the idolatrous practice of cutting one’s flesh and right before the laws of keeping Shabbos.

Blu tells us that we learn from these juxtapositions is that all laws are G-d’s laws. Socially ethical commandments, such as making sure your property is safe, are as holy as the instructions we don’t understand. Not sexually exploiting your child is as much of our covenant with G-d as is the holy bond of Shabbos.

We are what we repeatedly do. We must fully integrate our moral and ethical obligations with our other rich and varied Torah commandments.

This year, JOFA UK, along with so many others, say: #itsnotok. It is not OK to allow our communities to be a place where our children are at risk of sexual exploitation. It is not OK to use faith as a fig leaf for abuse. It is not OK for faith-based institutions to choose to protect perpetrators over survivors. Not in G-d’s name.







https://blogs.timesofisrael.com/itsnotok-the-communitys-response-can-hurt-more-than-the-abuse/?utm_source=The+Blogs+Weekly+Highlights&utm_campaign=blogs-weekly-highlights-

2019-02-07&utm_medium=email

Thursday, February 07, 2019

In Israel, (the home of Avrohom Mondrowitz, perhaps the worst child rapist ever, that Israel refused to extradite to the U.S. for trial) people who want to work in schools and with children are often asked to provide a teudat yosher from the police, which states that the person is a citizen of good standing who does not pose a risk to children’s welfare....But because the list only relates to convictions in Israel, someone who was convicted of sex crimes in another country could obtain this document in Israel, clearing them to work with children.

Israel arrests alleged sexual predator after France demands extradition

 

Ilan Levy-Neumand wanted for abusing 8 girls at his equestrian center in 1987-2001; after fleeing to Israel, he employed minors at stable he built in West Bank


Ilan Levy Neumand speaks during a radio interview on October 31, 2017 (screen capture: YouTube)
Ilan Levy Neumand speaks during a radio interview on October 31, 2017
 
Israel has arrested a resident of the Tekoa settlement who was convicted in absentia of sexually abusing teenage girls at his equestrian center in central France, the Jerusalem District Attorney’s Office announced Tuesday.

In 2016, France filed an extradition request upon learning that Ilan Levy-Neumand — who fled the country in 2002 after being briefly detained for questioning regarding allegations that he had committed sexual offenses against girls aged 14-18 between the years of 1987 and 2001 — was in Israel

“According to the complainants’ testimonies, from 1987 until he left the farm in 2001, the wanted person took advantage of his position at the ranch to commit sexual offenses against a large number of girls… who came to the farm to learn riding. Some of the complainants were employed by Levy-Neumand as babysitters for his children,” a statement from the district attorney’s office said.

In 2004, Levy-Neumand established a new horse stable in Tekoa, south of Bethlehem, where he employs teenage girls, according to residents of the settlement.

In 2010, he was convicted in abstentia after eight students testified against him. Levy-Neumand was sentenced to 15 years in prison. It took six more years for France to track him down in Israel, where he had since become a citizen.
Illustrative: A horse stable
 
 
A spokeswoman for the Jerusalem district attorney’s office said that while France had indeed submitted a request for extradition in 2016, such appeals take time to process. She said authorities are not aware of any allegations made against Levy-Neumand since he moved to Israel.

After Levy-Neumand was arrested on Sunday by the Israel Police in cooperation with Interpol, the State Attorney’s Office’s International Affairs Department filed a petition to the Jerusalem District Court requesting that Israel accept France’s extradition request.

The state attorney’s office said that if Levy-Neumand is extradited, he will be entitled to a new trial in France.

On Tuesday, the alleged sexual predator will be brought before a judge for his remand hearing. The prosecution will request that he remain behind bars until the end of proceedings against him.

However, the process is likely to take time. In 2014, Australian authorities filed a request for the extradition of Malka Leifer, who faces 74 charges of child sexual abuse from her time as a headmistress of the Adass Israel ultra-Orthodox girls’ school in Melbourne.

Leifer, an Israeli citizen, booked a red-eye flight with her family to Tel Aviv in 2008, following a heads-up from Adass officials days before the allegations against her surfaced.

After spending several years in the ultra-Orthodox town of Bnei Brak, 51-year-old moved to the isolated settlement of Emmanuel in the northern West Bank where she lived until she was arrested shortly after Australia’s extradition request. However, she was subsequently released to house arrest, with her attorney arguing that she was too mentally ill to stand trial.

Former Australian principal Malka Leifer, who wanted in her home country for child sex abuse crimes is seen at the Jerusalem District Court, on February 14, 2018
 
In 2016, the Jerusalem District Court froze the extradition process entirely, accepting the conclusions of a state psychiatrist who found Leifer to be catatonic. All restrictions on the former principal were subsequently lifted.

But in February 2018, Leifer was rearrested on obstruction of justice charges after private investigators filmed her going about her normal routine without any apparent difficulty.

A state psychiatric examination submitted to the Jerusalem District Court in August deemed Leifer fit to continue facing an extradition hearing. However, the judge agreed to her attorney’s request to allow for additional medical experts to testify regarding the suspect’s mental state. The hearings have dragged on for months and are expected to re-convene in March.

Last year, The Times of Israel learned that Leifer had briefly been allowed to teach at one of the elementary schools in Emmanuel.

In Israel, people who want to work in schools and with children are often asked to provide a teudat yosher from the police, which states that the person is a citizen of good standing who does not pose a risk to children’s welfare.

But because the list only relates to convictions in Israel, someone who was convicted of sex crimes in another country could obtain this document in Israel, clearing them to work with children.

https://www.timesofisrael.com/israel-arrests-alleged-sexual-predator-after-france-demands-extradition/?utm_source=The+Daily+Edition&utm_campaign=daily-edition-2019-02-05&utm_medium=email