Manchester Jewish charity sees increase in child abuse reports

(JTA) — The largest Jewish welfare charity in Manchester, England, said it was dealing with a “dramatic rise” in child abuse cases.

The Fed charity revealed that the number of youngsters requiring child protection measures and intervention from local authorities doubled to 40 in 2013, the Jewish Chronicle of London reported earlier this week.

Cases where local child protection teams have sought the expertise of the Fed’s social workers also increased by 20 percent, the report said.

Shelley Lewis, the Fed’s children and families social work team manager, told the Chronicle more cases of sexual abuse of children had come to light as a result of heightened press coverage of the issue.

Some 4,500 pupils attend Jewish schools in the Greater Manchester area, according to the paper. The area has a Jewish population of some 38,000, according to the European Jewish Congress.

In April, the Rabbinical Centre of Europe appointed Manchester’s Rabbi Yitzchok Rubin to co-chair a special advisory committee on child abuse as part of a bid to get schools to “stop covering up abuse of children and in general.”

The Fed charity’s Rosh Hashanah appeal said the community’s financial support is essential to maintaining its child protection work.

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