JCCV Statement on Royal Commission Report
30 November 2016
The Jewish Community Council of Victoria (JCCV) welcomes the report published yesterday by the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse focusing on the responses of Yeshivah Melbourne and Yeshiva Bondi. The findings in the report are no great surprise but nevertheless are highly disturbing and distressing.
All community organisations, community leaders and community members must be committed to the protection, health and safety of our children as the number one priority of the community. Victims must be respected, listened to and supported. Our institutions must be safe for our children, without exception.
JCCV President Jennifer Huppert stated, “The inaction, lack of reporting and absence of support for victims described in the Report is totally unacceptable. We all expect our community leaders and rabbis to set an example, and that includes protecting the vulnerable, supporting the victimised and having zero tolerance for child sexual abuse.”
Professionals and volunteers working with or around children must be appropriately trained, community organisations must have child protection policies and procedures in place, and religious leaders must reinforce the messages of protecting children, reporting incidents to authorities and supporting victims.
Ms Huppert stated, “It is coincidental that today the JCCV has issued its Child Safe Policy, which is attached to this statement. This Policy is an expression of the JCCV’s commitment to child safety, and sets out our code of conduct which outlines appropriate standards for the JCCV, its Executive, staff, committee members and volunteers. It is vital that as a community roof body we set the example to our affiliated and other community organisations to have a clear policy in place.”