Y.U. president calls abuse allegations ‘reprehensible’

NEW YORK (JTA) — The president of Yeshiva University said the school had a “zero tolerance” policy for sexual abuse and harassment following a lengthy investigation of past abuse allegations in the Forward.

ADVERTISEMENT
New Mt. Sinai Cemetery advertisement

President Richard Joel issued a statement Thursday following the publication of an article in the Forward newspaper which investigated claims, most of them more than two decades old, that two rabbis at the university’s high school for boys were known for acts of inappropriate and sexual contact with students.

According to the Forward, the activities of the two rabbis — George Finkelstein and Macy Gordon — were widely known in the university community and were reported to school adminstrators. Neither rabbi was disciplined by the university.

“The actions described represent heinous and inexcusable acts that are antithetical both to Torah values and to everything that Yeshiva University stands for,” Joel said. “They have no place here, in our community, or anywhere at all. The thought that such behavior could have occurred at our boys’ high school, or anywhere at this institution, at any time in its past, is more than sufficient reason to express on behalf of the University, my deepest, most profound apology.”

 

Need to know? Sign up now to get JTA’s free e-newsletters!

Click to write a letter to the editor.