Victory for Personal Rights

By Sharon Abraham-Weiss, Exec Director of ACRI

Last week, the Israeli economy reopened, and with it came the jumpstart of the “green passport” system, a law authorizing the Ministry of Health to reveal information about unvaccinated civilians to local municipalities, and a proposal to place electronic tracking bracelets on Israelis coming in from abroad.

The world is watching and wondering: what about human rights? To that end, I have fantastic news.

On the first of March, the High Court of Justice accepted our year-long claim that the Israeli General Security Services tracking of civilians during the pandemic is a severe violation of the right to privacy and cannot continue past March 14, 2021 in its current form.

Should the government wish to continue tracking civilians in the fight against the pandemic, there must be a clear, publicized protocol for doing so, and the tool is authorized only in circumstances in which an infected civilian refuses to cooperate with epidemiological investigations, or does not relay the full scope of contact with others.

That’s not all. 

  • Just this morning, we submitted an urgent petition to the High Court of Justice to repeal the law authorizing the Ministry of Health to transfer information of unvaccinated civilians to local municipalities.
  • We are monitoring the “green passport” situation, which raises questions concerning potential discrimination and proportionality as the infection rate decreases.
  • We appealed to the Attorney General regarding employers setting their own policies regarding the vaccination status of their employees, including requiring of them to report on their vaccination plans, and taking actions against them if they refuse.

Let’s be clear: we support incentivizing vaccinations and reaching herd immunity. But the end must justify the means, and we cannot bulldoze the right to privacy and the right to choose what to do with one’s body on the way.

 

 

 

 

Adv. Sharon Abraham-Weiss
Executive Director
Association for Civil Rights in Israel

March 2021