Mission

Sacred Spaces is a cross-denominational initiative to address abuses of power in Jewish institutions.

At the core we believe that Jewish communities can be exemplars in the prevention and handling of sexual abuse and other abuses of power. Most leaders and institutions want to do better on this critical issue but lack the knowledge and resources to protect constituents from predatory abusers. We are working to close the gap between the current institutional handling of these issues and a better vision for the future, by developing and providing resources that enable institutions to formulate robust policies and training within an accreditation framework. Sacred Spaces is the only institution in the Jewish community dedicated to developing a systemic approach to ending institutional abuse across the denominations.

We are an independent entity serving three key functions:

  1. Providing Jewish organizations with the professional services to develop robust policies and training to prevent opportunities for abuse.
  2. Accrediting institutions that have invested the requisite work in developing policies and providing training.
  3. Aiding institutions in responding to allegations responsibly, by providing them with a suite of services that ensures that a) they are legally compliant, b) victims are supported, c) future abuse is prevented, and d) damage to the institution is minimized.

Sacred Spaces believes that a lasting shift in institutional culture will occur only when institutions lead the charge. Thus, we partner with agencies on the ground and, using a train-the-trainer model, assist in forming and training anti-abuse teams in each institution we serve. This model marks a significant shift from the current norm of expert-driven initiatives, and is critical to affordable, sustainable, and systemic prevention of institutional abuse.