Haredi man tells London family court his daughter faces ostracism due to non-observant mother

Marcy Oster

(JTA) — A haredi Orthodox Jewish man from London told a family court judge that his 9-year-old daughter faces ostracism from their community after her mother allowed her to eat McDonald’s and go to a mixed-sex gymnastics class.

The girl’s mother had left her husband and their insular community, according to reports in the British media. A court had ruled that the girl would live with her father but spend time with her mother.

The father turned to family court to complain about what the mother allowed the daughter to do when they were together, the London-based Jewish News reported.

In addition to the non-kosher food and the gymnastics class, the father told Judge Laura Harris that his ex-wife drove with her daughter in a car on the Sabbath and had “dressed inappropriately” when picking her daughter up from her haredi Orthodox Jewish day school.


The judge reportedly told the mother that the daughter could remain in her gymnastics class and said that the mother promised not to feed her non-kosher food in the future. The case reportedly came to family court after the father had his former wife followed by a private investigator.

The case comes on the heels of a case in November in London family court in which a woman told the judge that her former husband, who had left the haredi Orthodox community, allowed their two young children to ride their bikes on Shabbat and to watch television, which are both eschewed by the community.