What Steps Will the Charedi World Take to Try to Prevent Abuse

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  • #2050031
    lakewhut
    Participant

    About two weeks ago a well-respected author in Israel took his life after 20 people reported abuse and he didn’t want to face the beis din of Tsfas. However he isn’t the first person who was able to use his religious appearance and fame to his advantage. What steps should the Charedi community take?

    #2050064

    Legitimizing the concern in order to deal with it has to come first. Many many people are still in total denial that such things can EVER happen. This happened by the Weberman case, by the Meisels case, here, and will keep happening until we as a global community stop trying to sweep the elephant under the rug. People are saying, it’s not possible that a frum upstanding man could do such things, and why should we believe the accusers anyway? (half the time they are OTD) Well you brainiacs, why do you THINK they went OTD to begin with??
    Secondly, I believe that the media was way too hyped up.

    EDITED

    Third, it seems that many people (rabbanim) were aware of the abuse for a long time already. If this is true (I am not sure it is) then we need a whole new type of LH workshop. If you are aware that someone is or was abused and nothing has been done to the abuser, you must report it to the authorities. Full stop. Therapists, doctors and the like are mandated reporters. I believe that rabbanim ought to be made into mandated reporters as well.

    EDITED

    This type of abuse can warrant the death penalty (in civil court), just to underscore the severity of it. Unfortunately, we are in golus now, and our beis din does not even have the power to give malkos or imprison someone, never mind kill. If someone murdered another, would you call your rabbi to deal with it? No, you would call the police and do your utmost to make sure that this menace to humanity is locked away for a long time, or eliminated! AND, if a rav is approached with such a story, he must IMMEDIATELY turn it over to the police and not think he can deal with it on his own.

    #2050128
    crazy horse
    Participant

    Simple never do yichud. Many yichud hetarim don’t apply with a therapist and people like that because it’s libo gas bah, and people who work with women a lot also don’t have hetarim.
    If something happens to you or someone you know say something because you are saving others.
    Never let your kids or family members go alone to any sort of practice.

    #2050130
    Pekak
    Participant

    We need to stop using untrained people as therapists. Either use the licensed therapists that are available or send your own to be properly trained (chas m’lehazkir).

    #2050179
    ujm
    Participant

    Trained/licensed therapists are also liable to commit abuse.

    #2050182
    🍫Syag Lchochma
    Participant

    Liable to? No.

    #2050196
    boruchbrown123
    Participant

    @crazy horse
    Issur yichud doesn’t apply male-to-male, which is often these abuse cases, particularly when the abuser is a therapist or teacher.
    Hilchos yichud is a baseline, not a full solution.

    #2050200
    boruchbrown123
    Participant

    @ujm
    Trained/licensed therapists have intensive supervision during training (and often throughout their career), have a professional certification to uphold, and there is a clear process to register concerns or complaints if they behave inappropriately.
    It doesn’t make abuse impossible, but it lowers the risk.
    Apart from that, if you ensure the therapist you are seeing is licensed, it means that they have never been expelled or excluded due to historic abuse. If you go unlicensed, you have no idea if he was chased out of a community ten years ago due to being an abuser.

    Also, the therapy might actually work if they have been trained in it.

    #2050231
    yehudis21
    Participant

    OP: What steps SHOULD they take, or what steps WILL they take? Those are very different questions.

    They SHOULD take many steps, some of which I’ve outlined in several posts that the holy moderators deleted, probably because they fall into camp B: namely, what WILL the charedi world do… which is, of course, absolutely nothing, other than try to keep it all quiet and hope it all blows over quickly.

    #2050233
    ujm
    Participant

    boruchbrown: Having a license, even with all the regulatory roadblocks and processes, is no heter to have Yichud.

    Syag, There’s no evidence that licensed therapists commit less abuse than unlicensed therapists.

    #2050242
    guteyid
    Participant

    Blaa blaa blaa………………….blaa

    #2050252
    ohrchadash1
    Participant

    In halacha the reason given that yichud doesnt apply to men is because “we dont suspect jewish men” of this and miklal kein atah shomeih lav there are commentaries that say that when such pritzus and toeivah is prevelant in society then yichud does apply between men as well.

    #2050336
    GadolHadofi
    Participant

    A number of charedi therapists, both licensed and unlicensed, have been convicted of abuse. Punctilious attention to Hilchos Yichud could have prevented some of these atrocities but not all. One infamous charedi monster abused boys before he fled to Israel. Another infamous charedi monster abused girls before she fled to Israel.

    #2050337
    lakewhut
    Participant

    UKM maybe not but an unlicensed therapist doesn’t have a certificate to lose. That’s the point of using qualified professionals over someone who isn’t verified.

    #2050361
    Participant
    Participant

    how’d you fight the tediousness to edit Politically Incorrect’s post?

    There was none

    #2050380
    Participant
    Participant

    selective tediousness. You’d think just pressing backspace and writing EDITED wouldn’t change much, but hey, no one ever claimed mods were too regular.

    #2050392

    Sheesh. I didn’t realize that my (intelligent) suggestions and commentary were THAT controversial! I thought that the point of the CR was to facilitate discussions of pertinent issues… Oh well.
    I’m actually pretty annoyed, because I think that some of the points which were censored (one specifically) is extremely important and underrecognized, and I was trying to raise awareness. I guess this is not the forum for that.
    Mods-if you didn’t like the suggestions (with explanations) that I wrote in response to the OP, why didn’t you just delete the OP’s thread before anybody saw/responded to it? It was bound to be controversial!

    You may need to rethink why posts get deleted (see https://www.theyeshivaworld.com/coffeeroom/topic/dystopian-future-of-the-cr ) You are also asking why I didn’t delete an OP instead of asking if your post was actually a response to it.

    #2050416
    Yserbius123
    Participant

    We should listen to Rav Yaakov Horowitz and all the other Rabbonim trying to educate the frum oilom on the very real dangers of abuse. There’s literally nothing more to add.

    #2050419

    Uh, IMNSHO the OP was opening the floor to suggestions and ideas about how to prevent this tragedy from recurring. So yes, my post was a response. I’m not sure what led you to think otherwise. I simply listed several things that I believe need fixing, and explained them.

    #2050445
    BY1212
    Participant

    A baby step would be to stop protecting abusers behind faux concerns for loshon horo.

    Maybe if abuses knew they could not count on the helige oilam to protect them they would think 2X.

    #2050443
    BY1212
    Participant

    There is no abuse. It’s just loshon horo and Assur to believe. And the ‘victims’ simply have to bear their suffering in silence, after all lloshon horo is kneged kulam

    #2050461
    FrumWhere
    Participant

    Currently there is a great deal of noise about the CW case, and unfortunately, in my opinion it will never rise above that. The pattern in our Chareidi world generally is that after such an incident, the noise level, the outrage, the anger boils over, and the few well-meaning Rabbonim who truly care join the noise, and even say many intelligent and poignant things, but most of the Rabbonim remain quiet, and when the next case comes around, they again keep it quiet until it blows up, and then the cycle repeats itself. That’s what happened for more than 35 years with the first Kolko story, then with second Kolko fiasco in Lakewood, etc etc. The destroyed lives of victims are not reckoned with at all, only the minimization of tarnish or stain on the educator/rabbi/leader or perpetrator du jour.

    I have a question, though. It seems that we have a new wrinkle in the CW case that we never dealt with before, whether to “burn” his books or not (previous perps apparently didn’t leave such popular material behind). While I personally am agnostic on that question, I wonder why we still allow Carlebach’s songs in shuls, weddings, etc., considering that there has long been a big (and appropriate and correct) movement in the Centrist and Modern Orthodox worlds to ban his tunes from their prayer services etc. I suspect that few readers here have any idea what I’m talking about,

    I also doubt the moderators will allow this post…

    edited

    #2050472
    ujm
    Participant

    Rav Moshe ztl has a teshuva on how to deal with Carlebach, given his sinful ways.

    #2050487
    GadolHadofi
    Participant

    There will hopefully be teshuvos on how to deal with charedi monsters like Walder, given the sinfulness of their ways.

    #2050489
    FrumWhere
    Participant

    Yes, UJM, that teshuva was written in 1959-60, I believe, and wasn’t about the behaviors that surfaced much later in his life and mostly after his death. The question is now that these new issues are pretty much accepted fact, how is his music different from CW’s books?

    #2050497
    🍫Syag Lchochma
    Participant

    There have been some phenomenal drashas on this by several very chashuv Rabbeim who minced no words at all. I would give details but ujm wants to pretend it never happened even though Rav Shternbach strongly disagrees. There are several others as well. And they discuss the books, the evidence, the lashon hora excuse and the need to not let this go. It’s very encouraging, and instead of blabbering that nothing is ever done, go listen to them, give them credit for what is said, and get your tuchus over to someone who can help you work on a solution. Sitting around and bad mouthing everyone for not doing anything until now may make you feel better than them but you need to do something.

    And a small thing that may help is to stop taking every thread asking about what to do next and turning it into a discussion about CW and the community’s complacency.

    #2050511
    crazy horse
    Participant

    You will probably never solve every problem, but you can limit them as much as possible.
    Besides for yichud besides for the obvious cases of it, you can’t leave anyone alone with a non shomer person or even any of your animals.
    I want to add some things, there are many reasons why people go off the derech or on the fringe of orthodoxy in most cases these people are the most vulnerable as they are outcast in the yeshiva world,
    We must make clear we believe every accusation and never doubt the accuser unless evidence shows otherwise and we must have this message loud and clear especially parents to their kids.
    Even if the kid isn’t so frum because we see these outcast many times are taken advantage of.
    As for the person being accused if the story looks like it makes sense publicize it and go straight to the police.
    As for moser doesn’t apply because jail is not like in the olden days where it was a death sentence. this perpetrator is simply getting removed from society to stop him from harming others.
    And the prosecutors delt with these cases many times and are assured a fair trial, maybe too fair think OJ who’s free right now, or durst who killed 3 people, or jeffrey epstein who at first only got one year in jail.

    #2050532

    After what happened in this case I would hesitate to publicize until the abuser is arrested. Publicizing before the abuser is secured in a place to await trial somewhere that they cannot harm others or themselves is counterproductive. (He may run away/commit suicide) However, once the abuser is in jail awaiting trial, the story SHOULD be publicized as much as possible, to encourage other victims to come forward.
    So in short- first go to the police and have him arrested, and THEN publicize.

    #2050664
    besalel
    Participant

    It is interesting to note that the Edia Charedis Yerushalayim banned Walder books about six months before the allegations about him came to light in a written publication. The reason for the ban at that time was very murky. Something to do with the fact that he writes in a goyishe style. I really do wonder now whether the Eida was privy to the allegations and were doing what they thought was best to remove him from his position of power.

    #2050671
    user176
    Participant

    “The charedi community” are the least responsible. The responsibility lies first on the parents of the victims. Any “Frum” therapist with this type of yesser hara should create safeguards for themselves not to run into this mess. My assumption is that guilty Frum therapists don’t want to do these things but they can not avoid the temptation. But my opinion is that the parents really need to know better and not just ship their kids off and hope for the best. We’ve now learned a big lesson that you can never assume your kids “are in good hands” regardless of the therapists reputation. You need to be involved.

    #2050694
    ujm
    Participant

    Besalel: What’s your source for that?

    #2050763
    besalel
    Participant

    user176, i am somewhat offended by the idea that the parents of victims are to blame. and even more than the abuser? come on, man.

    ujm: a little tricky since sharing links us forbidden. Maybe you can do a google search for “Eida Hachareidis Bans All Chaim Walder’s Books” and look for the blog entry dated june 17, 2021.

    #2050785
    Shimon Nodel
    Participant

    Take a lesson from Shimon and Levi. Make people think twice before trying anything

    #2050788
    ujm
    Participant

    Shimon and Levi were punished by Yaakov Avinu.

    #2050802
    Gadolhadorah
    Participant

    Given that in the early stages there almost always is a question of how do you balance the potential harm to an alleged abuser’s reputation with the potential harm to victims if you remain silent? Once allegations are shared (even if done “confidentially”) the word always gets out. At the same time, delay can inflict lifetime trauma on the victims. It will always be a difficult call but after years of giving chashuvah rabbonim and askanim the benefit of the doubt, the pendulum has clearly moved in the direction of putting the interests of victims first.

    #2050805
    1a2b3c
    Participant

    I believe (just misvara, not based on evidence) that when a great scandal like this happens, it DOES lead to positive change. Not necessarily in the whole Chareidi world, but definitely in the place of the scandal. And the latest scandal was so far reaching that I think that the positive changes will also be far reaching, IYH.

    #2050845
    Shimon Nodel
    Participant

    The Ramban explains that Yaakov Avinu rebuked them for killing the entire city, but not for killing Shchem and Chamor

    #2050844
    eddiee
    Participant

    To all those that say that the interests of the victim comes first, what are you going to do when someone falsely accuses YOU? Will you have alot of understanding for all the Choshuva CR posters that are tearing your life apart? I know that this doesn’t solve any problems, but lets put some perspective on those that focus on the Loshon Hora aspect.
    I also may suggest that when a child goes to therapy, a parent should always be there. We, as a society, are too trusting of people. Even if the therapist says that it won’t work well, then find a different therapist if necessary.

    #2050856
    🍫Syag Lchochma
    Participant

    OMG! You are so right! We should totally abandon those victims. Let them them live out their gehenom elsewhere. Don’t want to take that one in a million risk. Thanks for setting us straight!!

    #2050849

    eddiee > lets put some perspective on those that focus on the Loshon Hora aspect.

    Let’s learn from history. Similar events were uncovered in other culture: religions, businesses, movie studios. It seems that in most cases, problems were not “one off”, it involved multiple people and organizations that did not fulfil their duty over long period of time. Number of cases where multiple accusers appeared out of nowhere and attacked an innocent person seems to be negligible. I am not pre-judging or accusing anyone, but probabilities here say that we need to first worry about possible abuse and support of abusers rather than false accusations. I would also think that it is possible to create a one-off accusation with two people and no witnesses, and later allegedly told others. But it would be hard to create a pattern of similar accusations and not be caught in a lie with all modern forensic tools.

    #2050862
    eddiee
    Participant

    Why do you jump to extremes? If I suggest that we are a little more cautious in trusting someone that you don’t really know with uncontrolled access to your child, it means abandoning them? This is a child whom ostensibly was not abused yet, but rather going for therapy for some other reason, considering that the therapist is the abuser. All I am suggesting is that we treat our child like he/she is a million dollars. I suspect that most of us would not loan a stranger, no matter his title, a million dollars with no rock solid guarantee that you would get it back.
    Treat your child the same way. Kabdeihu V’chashdeihu.

    #2050893
    boruchbrown123
    Participant

    @eddiee
    It is exceedingly concerning when someone’s main worry about this whole scandal is “what happens when I’m accused of abusing someone?!”

    If this is what is bothering you most, you may want to examine your own behaviour. Most people who have done nothing wrong wouldn’t even have a fleeting thought of being wrongly accused on sexual assault.

    #2050917
    eddiee
    Participant

    No, just I know 2 people that were wrongly accused. One was by an unstable child who did it in retaliation for her being told no to something she wanted. The man lost his job and was pilloried by his community, even though it was common knowledge that nothing happened and it was all made up. His boss told him that even though everybody knows that it isn’t true, he can’t afford to keep him because of the repercussions in the media (i.e. the “Blogs”). The second case actually went to the authorities, and the DA cleared the man of all charges. In the meantime, he was put through the wringer in his community.

    #2051190

    Boruch > Most people who have done nothing wrong wouldn’t even have a fleeting thought of being wrongly accused

    There are people who get into yichud problems and think about it. so they have doors with windows or other arrangements.

    #2051193

    eddiee > was pilloried by his community, even though it was common knowledge that nothing happened

    This is as not normal as the opposite situation where abuse is common knowledge and is ignored. Are you sure that this is actual fact that nothing happened and everyone knows or just your wishful thinking?

    #2051270
    user176
    Participant

    Besalel- that the abuser is to blame goes without saying. Strange that you are offended that didn’t mention something so obvious.

    I never mentioned blame, I said “responsible”. The point of this post was to explore what can be done moving forward to prevent this from happening. The first and best line of defense to protect children is their own parents. As a side, a Frum therapist should create safeguards for him/herself so as not to fall into this trap.

    #2051280
    🍫Syag Lchochma
    Participant

    One of the things that makes the monsters target an individual is their vulnerability. They look for people who don’t feel like they have a support system, don’t have a strong kesher with their parents or don’t seem likely to seek help. I want to add that that does not mean they don’t have a support system or parents who care, it just means that they don’t feel it is a place for them to go. The more you let your kids know you are there for them and the more you actively seek out info from them about their lives, the greater the chance they will not appear so vulnerable.

    Again, it’s not to blame anyone, it’s a recommendation to lower the chances.

    #2051397
    Participant
    Participant

    absolutely nothing contradictory with assisting victims but demanding no one prematurely tears apart possible abusers.

    #2052161
    HaravPhilDaBoi
    Participant

    if you are a certified therapist then take the easy path and get a security camera for your room where you practice.
    if you cant afford one then ask your community to support you and help prevent future cases like this

    #2053018
    EJMRBro
    Participant

    Call. the. cops.

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