Fact vs. Fiction: The Truth from Dahn Yoga–Response to New York Post Story
by Dahn Yoga Corporate Communications
A story appeared on Page 7 in the November 9, 2009 issue of The New York Post that purported to uncover a relationship between a new supplementary program being adopted by several New York City public schools and Dahn Yoga. The reporter, Yoav Gonen insinuates that Dahn Yoga, who is a defendant in a lawsuit by disgruntled former employees, is trying to sneak into the New York City school system. He makes Dahn Yoga seem sinister by recounting claims of plaintiffs in current and past lawsuits. This article contains several distortions and misstatements, including my own words.
In his account of the present lawsuit against Dahn Yoga, Mr. Gonen neglects to inform your readers that on November 3, Judge Susan Bolton dismissed 8 out of 10 of the claims in the current lawsuit which applies to 26 out of 27 of the plaintiffs. The judge ruled that the plaintiffs had provided insufficient facts to support their claims. Judge Bolton granted the Motions to Dismiss with respect to claims of fraud, undue influence, RICO conspiracy and Fair Labor Standards Act violations. The only claims which remain are of the plaintiff alleging sexual assault. We will soon present the court additional materials showing that those remaining claims should also be dismissed or subjected to summary judgment. The information presented to the court that was a key factor to the plaintiff withstanding motions to dismiss and motions for summary judgment is false. Her stories are not only inconsistent with what witnesses tell us, but also with her own prior statements. The alleged sexual assault never occurred.
Mr. Gonen did not take the time to dig deep enough to learn more about the plaintiffs’ individual characters. It seems he just repeats what they have said in other publications and in the complaint. However, some of the comments and accusations the plaintiffs have made exceed the boundaries of complaint and will be grounds for potential counter suits. Many of these accusations are clearly defamatory in nature and were included for their sensationalizing affect in order to attract media attention and thereby force us into a settlement.
In addition, he repeats the claims of the plaintiffs in a wrongful death lawsuit, but omits the fact that the case was dismissed, that the coroner’s report showed no trace of drugs and the Sheriff’s report indicated no signs of foul play. Worse, he mentions a former employee’s claim from 2002 for sexual assault, when no such claim was made in that case. A quick review of the actual complaint would reveal this fact. I would expect your senior education reporter to have stronger skills than this.
2. Distortion of Fees
As a reflection of the reporter’s bias, there is misleading information about the cost of Dahn Yoga membership which he states is $10,000 for a week of training. No such arrangement exists. Dahn Yoga offers a variety of memberships and training programs, but most members can expect pay around $10 to $15 per class. The prices for advanced courses are comparable to similar personal development programs and take place over a three to six month period.
3. Exaggeration of Relationships
Dahn Yoga as an organization has no official relationship with and no official presence in NYC schools. Mr. Gonen assumes that the Power Brain Education program is not an independent entity and does not recognize significant differences in the methods used by Power Brain Education and Dahn Yoga. It’s true both companies have a common root in the 5000 year old traditional Korean healing wisdom and philosophy developed by Ilchi Lee. However, Power Brain Education stands on its own in its work with school communities and its relationships with school districts.