Life in the ultra-Orthodox Jewish community of Lev Tahor is supposed to be simple: the rules for dress, diet, schooling, marriage and worship are clearly defined and closely followed. But last November, in the middle of the night, about 200 members of the sect fled their homes in Quebec to start a new community in Chatham, Ontario, amid allegations of child neglect. Now the sect is fighting to keep more than a dozen children that a Quebec court ordered removed from their families. Recently released search warrants show Quebec provincial police have been investigating allegations of unlawful confinement and physical abuse of children within the sect, as well as marriage of underage girls to much older men.
top of page
The ultra-orthodox Jewish community of Lev Tahor is fighting to keep their children amid allegations from youth protection officers that the sect is a dangerous and controlling environment, where girls are married off underage, people are brainwashed and physically abused.
In November, the group left Quebec ahead of a court hearing that would eventually order the temporary removal of 14 children. The sect loaded all families with children under 18 into three buses and, in the dead of night, drove for over 12 hours to Chatham-Kent, Ontario.
bottom of page