Rabbi Motti Elon: "Inappropriate Behaviour" - Updated
What is clear, is that abuse and misconduct are pervasive, and every community is confronted by this. "Takana" is an interesting model for a community's reponse, within the framework of the law, for dealing with sex abuse and misconduct.
Update: 17th February 2010...
The "Takana" Forum met last night, and issued a statement, which explains more background to their previous statement (see above) regarding Rabbi Motti Elon, and reveals more information.
The statement is in question & answer (which I will summarize) style.
Takana respond to six questions, being
* What is the Takana Forum, and how does it operate?
A group consisting of rabbis, professionals and public figures. They are backed by many National Religious educational and other organizations.
The purpose of the Forum is to prevent and deal with cases of sexual misconduct and abuse by people in public position or authority.
The Forum does not replace the national authorities, but supplements them in situations that the law does not operate, such as people who complain to Takana but do not wish to lodge formal complaints with the police; immoral acts which are not illegal; etc.
The Forum operates in total confidence, and allocates a sub-committee to handle each complaint received.
* Why didn't you go to the police?
The Forum consulted the Attorney General; due to the unwillingness of those bringing complaints to Takana to also report them to the police, which meant that the police would be unable to open a file, Takana was permitted to deal with the case without referring it to the police.
* What is one able to publicize about this?
There were two complaints against R.Motti Elon.
The first was investigated by a sub-committee. R.Elon explained to the committee that it was a one-off event, and that he had now controlled his problem.
As a result of that complaint, R.Elon agreed to keep "yichud" (avoid meeting privately) also with boys.
The second complaint, which was even more severe than the first, reported events which had taken place during the same time period as the sub-committeee had been investigating the first complaint.
As a result of this second complaint, Takana enforced a new code of conduct on R.Elon, including requiring him to resign as head of Yeshivat Hakotel, and his other public duties and positions.
Of his own choice, R.Elon moved to Migdal in the North of Israel.
* Why didn't you publicize this initially?
In order to protect those who had brought complaints.
* Why did you publicize this now?
After it became clear that R.Elon was not keeping to his agreed restrictions on behaviour, in spite of warnings, Takana then regretfully publicised the case in order to protect the public.
* What is the current situation?
More complaints have surfaced since the publication; these have not yet been substantiated.