Saturday, October 11, 2008

Protect our Children

The following petition was sent to me by Chaim Shapiro and I was asked to post it. Which I am happy to do. I am going to sign it and I urge anyone reading this to sign it as well.

I am not by nature prone to signing petitions of any kind. And - by nature - I am pretty skeptical person. But this issue is too important. And this petition is about as straight forward as possible. Please sign on at:

I present it now in full as it was sent to me.

A Yom Kippur Resolution to Protect our Children (If you would like to add your name to the petition, please email Sherree Belsky at

Mee Lahashem Aylai

Let’s make a Kiddush Hashem and stand up for our children!

On Yom Kippur we read the part in the Torah where incest is prohibited. It is the first time in history where a code of law condemned this practice officially. It is where we all first learned about the crime. We read it right before Neilla. While for many, and for many years it has been confusing as to why we read this horrible portion with all the examples of sexual depravity at the holiest time of the year, on THIS year, the explanation may seem readily apparent. In light of the recent horrific news about child abuse that have rocked our communities and as a partial fulfillment of our obligation for Teshuva on Yom Kippur we the undersigned resolve that:

We are committed to the undeniable right of children to live and learn in a safe, secure happy environment were people they are supposed to look up to and trust are not threatening their physical, emotional and mental health and well-being.

We denounce those individuals who act so immorally and dishonorably as “sinners” against the Torah and its moral values whether they are ill or evil and must be immediately removed from their innocent prey.

We will not stand blindly, silently or helplessly while child abuse happens in our communities.

We resolve to do everything in our power to speak up and confront abuse.

We will educate ourselves and protect our children.We will offer support and/or protection to victims/survivors of child abuse.

We will follow appropriate guidelines for reporting child abuse and molestation to legal authorities.We will support legislation to make our Yeshivos/schools safe for all students.

We will work to educate our community to prevent further abuse.