Legal Victory Brings More Equality to East Jerusalem

Following a petition by NIF grantee Tzahor, which works on education and social justice issues in Jerusalem, the Jerusalem District Court has ruled that the Municipality must provide more children’s playgrounds in East Jerusalem. Tzahor filed the petition on behalf of the residents of Shoafat and Beit Hanina, two of the city’s under-served Palestinian neighbourhoods.

Currently, there are 30 times more children’s playgrounds in Jewish areas of Jerusalem than there are in Palestinian neighbourhoods. In Pisgat Ze’ev, for example, there are 56 playgrounds for every 44,000 residents, while in Beit Hanina and Shoafat, there are only three playgrounds (one of which was built privately) for every 60,000 residents. The number of playgrounds per capita in Palestinian neighbourhoods is a mere 1% of the national average.

The petition asked the court to order the city to build at least 10 playgrounds over the next two years and another 20 within five years. In her ruling, Judge Nava Ben-Or said: “the gap [in playground development] between the two types of neighbourhoods is unreasonable to an extreme degree”.

Photo via Flickr

February 2016