Forum Takana’s Ethical Code
• It is our obligation to ensure that our behavior is in no way suggestive sexual assault or sexual harassment. This obligation comes from the commandment "Thy camp shall be holy" and also from the duty we have of rescuing the oppressed from the oppressor, stemming from "neither shalt thou stand idly by the blood of thy neighbor."

• This obligation is consistent with the laws of the State of Israel and should not be interpreted in any manner contradicting the law and its subsequent amendments. This obligation intends to supplement, implement and expand the scope of behavioral accountability according to Torah standards.

• Injustice must never be covered up due to the fear of public exposure. On the contrary, implementing justice demonstrates the greatness of G-d.

• This ethical code applies to all members of the Forum and their positions held, both within and outside the Forum.



1. A member of the Forum who knows of any sexual assault or sexual harassment, whether the victim complained to them or they learned about it in another way, is obligated:

1.1. To maintain confidentiality in all matters relating to the case, and not take any step that could expose the complainant without their express written consent.
1.2. To ensure that the complainant is treated with empathy, including not addressing their complaint in a way that implies guilt or doubts concerning their credibility.
1.3. Not to reduce the severity of the act due to the lifestyle or circumstances of the complainant.
1.4. To offer the complainant the option of presenting the details to a woman.
1.5. If the complainant chooses to tell the Forum member the story, to refrain from asking intimate questions related to the complainant's life that are not directly related to the case.
1.6. To testify to the complaint wherever the complaint is being arbitrated (before a judicial authority or before an institution that is not a judicial authority, such as an employer or an agreed upon arbitrator), unless the victim objects to it, or it is testimony which prohibits a woman and her husband from testifying against each other according to Jewish law
1.7. To refrain from actions or omissions that will silence the complaint or cause it not to be treated fairly, and to prevent others from actions or omissions that could cause such a result.
1.8. To refrain from public or private activity that could harm the complainant, their good name or that of their family, such as adding their signature to the publication condemning the complainant.
1.9. To implement decisions made by the institution in which the complaint is being arbitrated according to the law or by the Forum, and to act to prevent the employment of anyone found guilty of harassment from re-entering a framework that would allow them to harass again. According to the circumstances of the case, one should consider preventing their employment or inviting them to give classes and lectures in any public Torah setting.

2. The Forum member requested by the complainant to handle the complaint:
2.1. Will inform the complainant of what is within their rights to be done by law, and assist by submitting and receiving professional assistance to the best of their abilities, including referring the complainant to an organization that has a mechanism in place for handling sexual harassment complaints.
2.2. The member of the Forum will not dissuade the complainant from taking any available course of action afforded to them by law
2.3. Even if the Forum member believes that the allegation is false, s/he is obligated to inform the complainant of the legal options open to the complainant.
2.4. If the defendant works under the authority of the Forum member in the framework of employer-employee relations, the member will investigate the complaint as required by law.
2.5. If the defendant works in a different framework, and the Forum member believes the complaint to be credible, the Forum member will suggest to the complainant that they report the complaint at the defendant’s work place. If the complainant agrees, the forum member will make sure that the complaint is being dealt with at the defendant’s place of work.
2.6. If the Forum member has a personal connection to the case, they will inform the complainant and ask their permission to forward the complaint to another rabbi or public figure and ensure that the complaint is investigated by that party. If the complainant refuses, the Forum member will make clear to the complainant that they will not be handling the complaint and suggest that they approach a rabbi / other public figure or another organization that handles sexual harassment complaints. In any case where the Forum member does not intend to handle a complaint, they will make it clear to the complainant and make sure that the complaint is handled by the person who forwarded the complaint to them.
2.7. The Forum member shall not disclose information relating to the complaint unless they must do so in order to transfer the investigation of the complaint and have received written permission from the complainant to do so.
2.8. The Forum member will not ask the complainant questions that do not relate to the actual details of the complaint. These include questions regarding the sexual experience of the complainant that are not connected to the case, as well as questions relating to the complainant's non-halachic behavior, and will not refer to such information in any context.

Takana Forum (RA 580519692)
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