Old attitudes towards the handling of abuse must be made obsolete. We need our leaders to understand that the first and only response to abuse must be preventing it and supporting the victims – never the abuser.
Earlier today, Rabbi Binyamin Jacobs resigned his position as the Vice-President of the Board of the Amsterdam Cheider school.
This news comes after months of high-profile reports that Rabbi Jacobs had covered up at least three cases of child sexual abuse, and days after the Minister of Education in the Netherlands ordered an investigation into the handling of the abuse allegations in the case against now-convicted abuser Ephraim Schrijver.
We have closely followed the developments on these cases, and have voiced our insistence that this kind of behavior by a leader entrusted to care for the children of our community, must result in his resignation.
We are encouraged by this step that we believe represents a shift in attitudes toward child safety, and sobered that this step was necessary in the first place.
We expect that this resignation will be followed by Jacobs stepping down from his post as Chief Rabbi and from his position as Head Chabad Shliach in Amsterdam.