Quebec, Canada - School Officials Decry Youth Services Agency Raid Of Montreal Yeshiva As Traumatic And Unnecessary
Montreal, Quebec - Dozens of young Chasidic boys were escorted from school in the middle of the day as a Montreal yeshiva was raided by police in an operation led by a youth protective services agency, prompting the school to denounce the action as unnecessary and unfair to the students.
According to CBC News reports, the raid took place today at a private school allegedly operating without proper permits from the Education Ministry. Approximately 60 children are estimated to attend the yeshiva located at the intersection of Parc Avenue and Beaubien Street in the borough of Rosemont-Le-Petite-Patrie in northwest Montreal.
School officials said that they were already in the process of scheduling a visit from Batshaw Youth and Family Centres and had never refused any request from the agency to see the school.
“We are certainly not very happy with the trauma caused to the kids, which was not in any way necessary given our cooperation with the [youth service] until now,” said board member Hirshber Hirsch.
Hirsch said that the planned visit was to have taken place in “the coming weeks” but that despite today’s events, the school would continue to work with the agency. Neither police nor a spokesperson for the health and social services agency that runs Batshaw would comment on the nature of today’s raid. A spokesperson for the Education Ministry would only say that there is no school registered at the location where the police operation took place.
Prior to removing the children from the building, twelve women, some holding folders, were escorted by police to their cars. Police would not confirm if the women were teachers in the school.
Today’s raid comes as the Outremont borough council moves ahead with a ban that would prevent all new houses of worship on two main streets in the heavily Jewish neighborhood. The Education Ministry has been cracking down recently on illegal schools, with a report surfacing Tuesday about how the Beth Esther Academy, a Chasidic girls school operating illegally in Outremont, was attempting to circumvent provincial law by meeting requirements for home schooled children.
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