Analysis Not Just Weinstein: The Year #MeToo Rocked and Shocked the Jewish World

Sep 18, 2018

Allison Kaplan Sommer

The issue has been so dominant that as the High Holy Days approached, a group of rabbis and scholars were inspired to come up with an addendum to the traditional Yom Kippur prayer, adapting the existing confessions with lines like:“For the sin we committed through inappropriate use of power.For the sin we committed by inappropriate sexual advances.For the sin we committed by putting people in power without oversight.For the sin we committed by not taking seriously the complaints of a colleague.For the sin we committed by not believing victims when they spoke up.For the sin we committed by not being aware of our own power or privilege when making an advance…”

In a major new initiative, B’kavod was launched in August by the Good People Fund and the Jewish Women’s Foundation of New York, with the aim of merging “Jewish values with Jewish organizational behavior.” It hopes to create “safe and respectful workspaces,” in order to “uproot this tension between the sacred spirit of the individual and the holy mission of the institution.”

The effort involves professional training for Jewish organizations, the establishment of hotlines for anonymous reporting, help and advice, and support for anyone wishing to go public.