June has been another turbulent month in Israel
June has been another turbulent month in Israel, and after the tragic violence in Eli & Jenin yesterday we are reminded once again of the need for a long-lasting agreement that will bring security.
For NIF we have had a flurry of wins that remind us of how effective even our smallest actions can prove.
Eight-year-old Israeli-born Geffen was threatened with deportation by the interior ministry. She is the daughter of a Jewish Israeli father who sadly passed away before her mother could complete the process of receiving legal residency status in Israel.
This is the only home she has ever known, and she has extensive family in Israel.
Over 41,000 people signed a petition to stop her deportation, that was slated for July. This week the Interior Minister Shas MK Moshe Arbel agreed to the re-opening of her case.
Many children in similar situations are faced with the threat of deportation, and this case could prove precedent-setting.
IRAC (the Israel Religious Action Centre) also enjoyed a win with the Gett Taxi company, forcing them to pay a hefty fine of £1.3 million and cancel their ‘Mehadrin’ service that in practice discriminated against Arab drivers. The Mehadrin filter was ostensibly designed to allow customers to exclusively book Shabbat-observant drivers.
The case exemplifies how racism and discrimination in Israel can be subtle and insidious and often evades the public eye. It also demonstrates how our wins are often slow and hard won – the lawsuit was issued three years ago.
Meanwhile, news of the threat to women’s rights in Israel hit the Guardian this week, with this article exposing how the current coalition threatens to expand the power of the rabbinical courts into a raft of civil issues which they haven’t overseen for 15 years.
The article explains how the extension of the power of rabbinical courts further undermines women’s power in their most vulnerable moments: in seeking a divorce, or when looking for protection from domestic abuse.
Our grantees Itach Ma’aki (Women Lawyers for Social Justice) and Kayan both voice their concern.
Finally, an excellent report produced by many of our partners including Yesh Din, Ir Amim, and Breaking the Silence on 56 years of the Occupation makes grim but essential reading.
As we enter a summer of further national protests and a continued full-throttle pushback for democracy, know that your support and engagement for our work and our values gives us the energy to continue.
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