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Fall 2018 Update on the AJS Sexual Misconduct Task Force

Laura Levitt

We are delighted to share with all of you our progress to date. Our task force was instrumental in putting together the AJS member survey with attention to questions of sexual misconduct. This is the first climate survey of the AJS to address these issues. In addition to the survey, the task force has organized a special Title Nine training session for the 2018 AJS Annual meeting in Boston; we have gathered resources around sexual misconduct issues, resources for those harmed as well as learning materials to educate all of us about best practices. These materials will be a part of a special page on the AJS website to be launched as the new guidelines and procedures around the AJS policy are ratified. To date, the task force has drafted a strong version of these guidelines and procedures that are currently in the process of being vetted. We hope to have this document ready to the AJS Board for ratification in December. These are huge steps forward. As the chair of this task force, I cannot say enough about the amazing work of my colleagues. It is an honor to serve with the members of this task force (Flora Cassen, Lisa Fishbayn Jaffe, Ari Y. Kelman, Keren McGinity, Rafael Medoff, Larisa Resnik, Josh Shanes, and Helene Sinnreich), the AJS staff, Warren Hoffman, the Executive Director of the AJS, our President Chris Hayes, and the members of the Executive committee who are all keenly aware of the urgency of our work.

Laura Levitt is a Professor of Religion, Jewish Studies, and Gender at Temple University. She is also the chair of the AJS Sexual Misconduct Task Force.