The KA responds

December 30, 2013 by  
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J-Wire ran a statement by Sydney caterer Amaze in Taste in which references were made about the Kashrut Authority. The KA has issued a statement of its own….

kashrutIt has been disappointing in recent months to see the absolutely baseless allegations against the KA being circulated in the Sydney community.

The KA is audited by the community’s leading auditor (Mr Peter Hersh). It fully complies with all standards required by the Department of Fair Trading and the Australian Charities and Not for Profits Commission (ACNC).

This includes a functioning lay board and Rabbinic board. Any Shomer Shabbos and Shomer Kashrus person is free to apply to become a member of the board. The KA has often sought lay members from the community to serve on its board and it continues to do so.

The allegations made by the AIT spokesperson regarding transparency and governance are utterly false and offensive.

As for the ridiculous statements regarding communal charges, etc, the KA seeks a reasonable per head function charge so that it may continue to operate. The only alternative is an annual charge which is charged in other jurisdictions. There is nothing extortionate about seeking to operate! The KA receives no communal funding, only fees for services rendered.

The KA sought from AIT normal commercial terms of engagement: a bond and a director’s guarantee. For the KA to do anything otherwise would have been irresponsible.

The Sydney Beth Din provides numerous thankless services for the Sydney Jewish community and its Rabbonim are respected worldwide.

I call on Jwire to exercise some discretion and judgement when providing a mouthpiece for this divisive vitriol. Why don’t you take some time out to publish all the amazing positive work that the Kashrut Authority and the Sydney Beth Din do?

The author of this letter is the Honorary Secretary of the Kashrut Authority. I am a solicitor who has sat on not for profit boards for the last 16 years. In this time I have also assisted numerous not for profit Jewish and non Jewish organisations throughout Australia. This includes establishing and advising on tax deductibility, setting in place governance measures and assisting with putting together programs. I have worked with numerous schools, universities, synagogues, education providers and welfare organisations. My experience includes successfully litigating in the Administrative Appeals Tribunal. I have also assisted with successfully obtaining seed funding for the Perth Yeshiva, as well as funding for numerous other endeavours for the Australian Jewish community.

In my view the KA is a well run, effective not for profit organisation that delivers a fantastic service to the Sydney Jewish Community. The Community is very lucky to have this organisation.

 

Chana Warlow-Shill

Hon Secretary Kashrut Authority

 

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