Female lawmakers sympathized with Rabbi Motti Elon's victim Wednesday, after a court ruled him guilty
of indecent assault by force against a minor.
MK Aliza Lavie (Yesh Atid), one of the founders of the Committee on Sexual Harassment in the religious feminist organization Kolech, said "it is a sad day for religious Zionism, but an important one and a milestone."
Lavie expressed support for the members of the Takana Forum against sexual abuse in the religious Zionist community and commended their dedication and trust in those who complained.
"We should remember that even though the Rabbi Elon case raised a lot of public interest, it is one out of many cases that the Takana Forum has heard since its foundation," Lavie said. "If a few years ago the assumption in the religious world was 'it doesn't happen to us,' today it is clear that sexual harassment exists in the religious community like in any other, but unlike in the past, now there is where to turn."
Opposition leader Shelly Yacimovich (Labor) said Elon's admirers and lawyers need to stop providing him with a "defensive casing and demand justice and sing songs of praise even after he was convicted by a court of law."
"Too often a low attacker who took advantage of his power and harmed the victim in body and soul is surrounded by supporters, while the victim who was humiliated, terrorized, wounded in a way that will never heal, is left alone and cast out," she stated.
Yacimovich pointed out that most sex offenders are not strangers, but people who know their victims well, are beloved by the victim and are in a position of influence.
"[Sex offenders are] often counselors, relatives, teachers, officers, bosses, rabbis or therapists," she added. "Forum Takana should be praised for bringing justice despite massive pressure."
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