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Lawmakers, social action NGOs to focus on job bills

November 13, 2011 02:39

Various socioeconomic bills are meant complement those based on Trajtenberg Committee on social change’s recommendations.

Kadima MK Shlomo Molla

Kadima MK Shlomo Molla. (photo credit:Courtesy: Itzik Edri, Kadima)

Social action NGOs, in cooperation with parties from the Left and the Right , are continuing their efforts to move this summer’s “social justice” demonstrations “from the tents to the Knesset.” This week legislative focus will be a series of labor-related bills.

Various socioeconomic bills brought to a vote in each themed week are meant to be complementary to those based on the Trajtenberg Committee on social change’s recommendations.

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On Sunday, nine bills on employment and labor issues will be brought to the Ministerial Committee on Legislation, proposed by Kadima, Meretz, Israel Beiteinu, Balad and Hadash, some of which include signatures by Likud, Shas, Labor and National Union lawmakers.

One such bill, by MK Shlomo Molla (Kadima) would require offices with a large number of employees to open day care centers for workers’ children. MKs Alex Miller (Israel Beiteinu) and Marina Solodkin (Kadima) proposed a bill to base immigrant teachers’ salaries on the total amount of years they worked, instead of the years they worked in Israel.

Another bill, by MK Orit Zuaretz (Kadima) would require employers to adjust the amount of sick days a worker receives in proportion to how many children the employee has.

In addition, Knesset committees will discuss employment-related issues, such as a Committee on the Status of Women meeting on the gender gap in salaries, or a Labor and Welfare Committee on employment conditions of contract workers.

The organizations participating in the social-legislation campaign include ACRI, Social Justice Beersheba, Rabbis for Human Rights, WIZO and Bema’aglei Tzedek, among others.

The efforts to pass social legislation began with the Knesset’s winter session two weeks ago, with seven housing bills – most of which did not pass – as well as no-confidence votes and speeches on housing in the plenum.

The NGOs called Shas the “disappointing faction of the week,” because the party’s MKs voted against all of the housing- related bills, except for one by MK Eitan Cabel (Labor), which had been approved by the Ministerial Committee on Legislation. Construction and Housing Minister Ariel Attias is a member of Shas.

“Two weeks ago, the MKs failed the public and voted against most of the housing bills,” a statement by the organizations explained. “This week, we’re giving them another chance to move from talk to action.”
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