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The Wellbeing of LGBT+ Pupils: A Guide for Orthodox Jewish Schools

September 24, 2018

The Church of England produced a similar report for it schools.  There was some controversy, as there is over this\Jewish report, but the nurture of our young people is paramount. The Torah commands protection of the vulnerable, whatever it prohibits.

Stonewall was consulted.

This report speaks the language of religious people. It talks about the prohibition on bullying in Judaism: humiliating someone is considered as serious as murder. It discusses the Jewish obligation to do anything to save a life in the context of high rates of suicide among LGBT+ people. It reminds readers that Judaism considers Leviticus’s injunction to “love your neighbour as yourself” the most important principle of the Torah. Essentially, it says the very obvious but very important thing: whether or not you think the Torah forbids gay sex, you’re still obliged to be kind, thoughtful and compassionate to all people.

This is how real change happens. Not by trying to strip people of the beliefs and practices woven through their lives but by easing those beliefs and practices into a less hurtful shape. By learning to speak the language even of those who hold different, sometimes offensive views.

Following the release of the document, the Chief Rabbi said, “This is a document which I believe is an extremely significant milestone and will have a real and lasting impact on reducing harm to LGBT+ Jews across the Orthodox Jewish community. Our children need to know that at school, at home and in the community, they will be loved and protected regardless of their sexuality or gender identity.”

Dalia Fleming, Executive Director of KeshetUK said, “KeshetUK is proud to have worked closely with Chief Rabbi Mirvis and Jewish LGBT+ people to create “The Wellbeing of LGBT+ Pupils: A Guide for Orthodox Jewish Schools”. KeshetUK now looks forward to working with with schools, Rabbis and educators across Jewish communities, supporting them to implement this guide so they can ensure their LGBT+ students reach their potential, free from homophobic, biphobic and transphobic bullying, discrimination and fear.”

You can download it here.

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