Friday, October 26, 2007

Statistics on Jewish Sexual Abuse

The Jewish Week has an interesting article on sexual abuse within the Jewish community and how the numbers compare to the world at large; it also calculates the differences between the Modern Orthodox and "fervently Orthodox" communities.
Despite the widespread impression in the Orthodox world that sexual abuse doesn’t happen within its precincts, or happens less than in the “outside world,” a report in the November issue of the journal of the American Psychiatric Association says that Orthodox Jewish women suffer as much of it as other American women do.

Twenty-six percent of respondents in a study about the sexual lives and attitudes of married Orthodox Jewish women — 55 percent identifying as Modern Orthodox and about 45 percent as fervently Orthodox — indicated that they had at some point suffered sexual abuse.

That figure is on par with the 25 percent to 27 percent of American women in general, without regard to their marital status or religion, who have reported
in numerous studies that they had been sexually abused.

The new article also says that fervently Orthodox women are more likely than Modern Orthodox women to have experienced sexual abuse, to have experienced it multiple times and to have experienced it the first time before age 13.
It's an interesting piece. I'd like to know more about the questions, methodology, and statistics, but obviously abuse is as large of a problem in the Orthodox world as anywhere else.

Elsewhere, R' Horowitz compares the actions of kannoim to bullies.