Senior YU Rabbi Says He Didn't Try To Stop Child Sex Abuse At YU's High School Because He Could Not Be Sure Allegations Met Halakhic Threshold For Truth
Speaking at a rabbinical conference in London, England, Rabbi
Hershel Schachter, the rosh yeshiva of Yeshiva University's rabbinical
school, says every community should have a board of Jewish yeshiva scholars who are also psychologists. That board should screen allegation of child sexual abuse and other forms of child abuse to determine if the child [or, by extension] making the claim is lying or not. That board should decide whether or not the allegations or suspicions should be reported to police or child services. And he made a stunning admission about the child sex abuse scandal that rocked YU's affiliated high school.
Rabbi Schachter also talks about mesirah, informing, and rules that there is no violation of the halakha, Jewish law, forbidding mesirah when reporting child sexual abuse and most other crimes to police or child services.
Schachter, who is clearly very bright, is also clearly very emotionally immature, and you can hear that immaturity on this audio as Schachter in essence makes ridicules a child sexual abuse survivor who came to him for help. Schachter shows no grasp of the psychology of child sexual abuse and shows no empathy whatsoever for the survivor.
His behavior toward that survivor also explains why the Yeshiva University child sexual abuse scandal went on for decades rather than stopping when the survivor told Schachter about the abuse.
In essence, Schachter says he was unable to determine whether the survivor's claims had merit or not (had raglayim l'davar or not), and therefore Schachter did not report the abuse to police or do anything to remove the alleged abuser through internal Yeshiva University channels. Truly appalling.
The audio runs 10 minutes and five seconds. Please click the gray bar to listen: