A program affiliated with the Friedberg Family Foundation, known as Toronto Friendship, has froze its funding for the Ami conversion programs, headed by Rabbi Haim Druckman, because of Druckman’s position on Rabbi Motti Elon, the Jerusalem Post reported Tuesday. Toronto Friendship is the second largest fund contributing to Rabbi Druckman’s conversion services.
The Friedberg Family Foundation decided to cut off the rabbi because he refuses to apologize for supporting Rabbi Elon after it became known, some eight years ago, that he was sexually abusing his students.
In 2013, a judge sentenced Elon to community service, and Rabbi Druckman said the judge had made a mistake and should not have convicted Elon. Druckman also said that Elon should not be dismissed from teaching and even invited him to lecture at his own, Or Etzion yeshiva.
A few weeks ago news broke that Elon continued to sexually abuse his students, but Rabbi Druckman did not apologize for his earlier position nor did he reverse it.
The Ami conversion program was established about a decade ago, operating 17 conversion programs around Israel, in cooperation with the state’s conversion program. Losing the funding would have a devastating effect on the program.
On Sunday, Rabbi Druckman did issue a statement offering to remedy the Elon issue. He wrote (curtousy of Arutz 7): “As soon as I received the information, and after conferring with other rabbis, I delivered an order that Rabbi Elon should not be allowed to deliver lectures or host any public activities, and that he should not have any private meetings with youths.”