Letter to USCJ and USY Community Stakeholders

August 25, 2021

For all of us at USY and USCJ, the past several weeks have been deeply painful. We are very saddened by the heartbreaking narratives shared by students and alum of USY and admire their courage in coming forward to bring voice to their experiences. To those sharing their narratives: We hear you. We care deeply about you. We want to learn more and be sure those with information to share about any inappropriate sexual conduct from any time period have a full opportunity to do so. And to all of our families, program participants, alumni and staff, we state loud and clear that the safety and protection of the young people in our programs is and always will be our top concern and priority. Hundreds of thousands of USYers over the years have safely participated and thrived in our programs under the supervision of thousands of well- trained, dedicated and responsible professional and volunteer staff.  But we also wish to share our determination to hold accountable any staff, leaders, or volunteers who did not live up to our standards and expectations.

We have received emails, phone calls, and petitions offering support to those who have come forward. We know that those expressions come from a place of deep caring for these individuals, and also for USY, USCJ, and the Conservative Movement. We share the goal of assuring that our youth programs will continue to empower Jewish youth to develop friendships, leadership skills, a sense of community, and commitment to inspired Jewish living that have been the hallmark of USY for 70 years.

We want to take this opportunity to update you on our efforts to fulfill the commitments we have previously announced:

  • We have engaged Sarah E. Worley Conflict Resolution, P.C. as third-party investigators to review the claims that have been brought forward. Ms. Worley’s firm has extensive experience in investigating confidential and sensitive matters involving sexual misconduct and reporting on these types of claims for many religious and educational institutions. She is the certified Title IX investigator for some of the most prestigious universities in the U.S., among others. Ms. Worley’s firm will contact anyone who reports, or has reported, allegations of misconduct to hear their experience. They will also pursue all relevant leads.
  • The USY and USCJ reporting Hotline is now independent of USCJ and USY. Hotline calls will now go directly to Worley Conflict Resolution. We strongly encourage all who have information or experiences to share to please call or email the Hotline.  You can contact the hotline by calling 617-419-1900 or emailing [email protected].
  • USY and USCJ will invest the time and resources necessary to conduct these third-party investigations thoroughly. The investigators’ findings will inform our actions to address any past wrongs and ensure safety and accountability going forward. Our responsive actions may include discipline, including termination, of staff and employees, revisions to policies and practices, trainings and evaluations, and counselling resources for those in need of healing.

We appreciate that many who have come forward publicly seek accountability, healing, and change, and do not intend to harm USY and USCJ in ways that prevent us from continuing to provide the vital Jewish enrichment programs for thousands of Jewish teens that have enhanced their personal development and Jewish identities for decades. These are very sensitive issues and we will work directly with those who have come forward with utmost respect for their privacy and dignity. Pending litigation limits what we can share publicly; we cannot and will not litigate these issues in the media. What we will do is engage directly with affected individuals, continue our search for the truth, hold those responsible for misconduct accountable, and safeguard all participants in our youth programs.

We are working with diligence and urgency on these important issues and will continue to provide regular updates. We deeply appreciate your ongoing concern, support and dedication to USY and the USCJ.

Respectfully Yours,

Rabbi Jacob Blumenthal


Ned Gladstein


Rabbi Joshua Rabin

Senior Director of USY