Legal anti-hate center opens in memory of Shira Banki

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December 15, 2016 21:00

Twenty-one students will participate in the clinic which will continue the work of its partner-centers, but will add the legal assistance component for the first time.

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Shira Banki

A memorial at the 2016 Jerusalem Pride Parade honoring Shira Banki. (photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM)

The first center in Israel dedicated to handling legal issues regarding hate and incitement on the Internet as well as a general struggle against hate and racism opened its doors on Wednesday with a conference on tolerance.

The center, hosted by IDC’s Radzyner Law School in Herzliya and in cooperation with the Berel Katznelson Fund, will be named after 16-year-old Shira Banki, who was stabbed to death by ultra-Orthodox extremist Yishai Schlissel during the Jerusalem July 2015 Gay Pride Parade.

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Focusing on “empowering students with the knowledge, tools and experience to develop into lawyers with social sensitivity and awareness,” the center will also provide “free legal advice and assistance to individual victims of hate and incitement crimes on the Internet and among the public.”

Further, the center will work to make the struggle against racism a wider public issue, including supporting and initiating legislation to address hate-crimes and incitement on the Internet and in general.

Twenty-one students will participate in the clinic which will continue the work of its partner- centers, but will add the legal assistance component for the first time.

At the conference, the Berel Ketznelson Fund’s prior recent report was discussed, in which it indicated a rise of 40% in calls for incitement to violence on the Internet, that a woman is sexually harassed on the Internet every three minutes and noting 390,000 examples of hate speech against gay and lesbian persons and their supporters.

Every 30 minutes, one of the hate-speech posts against gays and lesbians includes a call to violence, the report says.


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