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August 11, 2013 12:04 pm

Boston Jewish Family Sues Carver Schools in US District Court for Turning Blind Eye to Anti-Semitism Against 13-Year Old Son

avatar by Joshua Levitt

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A "Bully Free Zone" sign in Ohio. Photo: wiki commons.

A Jewish family is suing the school district of Carver, a suburb of Boston, Massachusetts, for turning a blind eye to anti-Semitic attacks against their 13-year old son, The Patriot Ledger and The Boston Globe reported.

The mother of the victim Jennyfer Sordillo said she also suffered anti-Semitic abuse when she was a student in Carver. “I can understand exactly what my son goes through all the time,” Sordillo, 38, told The Patriot Ledger. “That’s why I said, ‘You’ve got to be kidding me. This is still going on?’ I will not let my son be tortured like this.”

The lawsuit claims the school department is violating the boy’s constitutional rights by “failing to prevent religious-based harassment and bullying,” “deliberately disregarding the harassment and physical abuse,” and failing to follow its anti-bullying plan, The Patriot Ledger reported.

Defendants in the suit are the Carver School Department, Superintendent Elizabeth Sorrell, Carver Middle-High School Principal Scott Knief, and Assistant Principal Christine Cabral.

“This is not a traditional bullying case. It’s about targeting someone specifically because of their religion,” attorney Joseph L. Sulman, who is representing the boy’s family and seeking financial damages, told The Patriot Ledger.

The Boston Globe said the boy was the target of daily anti-Semitic attacks from a group of boys who subjected him to offensive religious slurs and Nazi salutes. The suit alleges that the boy was beaten up, had pennies thrown at him, was slammed against lockers, and punched in the head. A swastika was also found etched in chalk outside the family’s Carver home.

Two of the bullies were arraigned last month on assault and battery and civil rights charges.

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