London – The Chief Rabbi of the United Hebrew Congregations of the Commonwealth released a statement Tuesday stating that it is imperative that child sexual abuse be reported in the Jewish community.
Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis’ statement follows the conviction of a Haredi teacher last week of sexual abuse.
Todros Grynhaus, 50, of Salford was convicted of five counts of indecent assault and two counts of sexual assault against the girls when they were aged around 14 and 15.
“This kind of abuse is a stain on all of society and we are no less vulnerable to the scourge of sexual crimes than any other community.
Perpetrators of these crimes destroy lives and every one of us shares in the responsibility to protect victims and potential victims,” Mirvis wrote in his statement.
“As such, we must not only ensure that all incidents are reported to the police without delay, but that we must do everything in our power to promote a culture whereby reporting such crimes to the relevant statutory authorities is supported and encouraged,” he continued.
Mirvis stated he plans on writing to rabbis around England to notify them of a mandatory seminar hosted by the United Synagogue to help rabbis learn how to identify incidents of child abuse and help the victims.
“It is imperative that communities across the country have robust child protection policies in place and should act in consultation with the statutory services.
Every community should review its policies and procedures regularly and consider what else can be done – we can always do more.”