When sexual abuse allegations surfaced at Yeshiva University High School in late 2012, the school hired a prominent law firm to independently investigate these serious allegations involving at least two staff members, Rabbi George Finkelstein and Rabbi Macy Gordon with the stated focus being to “perform a full and complete independent investigation of these reports and any other reports of sexual or physical abuse of University students.” Both Finkelstein and Gordon were at the school for a combined 64 years and no doubt came into contact with hundreds, if not thousands of young students.
Today, the report was released.
Unfortunately this report fails to help survivors, students, alumni and everyone else looking for answers as to why the sexual abuse wasn’t stopped for so many years. What the report fails to address and what we are left wondering is why the report didn’t specifically mention any perpetrators or their methods of accessing children. Similarly, there is no significant mention of what could the school have done different to assist the criminal authorities to hold these perpetrators accountable. Why is there no personal accountability on the administration’s part for those who empowered these perpetrators and caused the victims to feel as if they wouldn’t be believed? Finally, the report hints that there was even MORE abuse occurring at other Yeshiva University campuses but absent is the identity of any perpetrator or school where these horrific crimes were taking place.
In order to comprehend and find these answers for those searching for hope, healing and justice, perhaps the Board of Trustees, Board of Directors and the investigators can shed some light on these issues and extend help to those victims still living in shame and silence. For true justice to prevail the public needs to be informed of these hazards so that other children can be better protected in the future and those that enabled the sexual abuse to continue at YU can be held accountable.