Be'ersheba police will open an investigation into allegations of racism at a local health club following a Channel 10 expose that highlighted apparent racism on the part of employees of the facility. The investigation is the first time police have pursued a criminal probe following such allegations since an anti-racism in public places bill was passed 13 years ago.
The investigation follows a segment aired on Channel 10's “Orly and Guy” program showing Arab visitors being denied entry to the facility by cashiers who said that only residents of Be'ersheba could enter. The show included footage of a Jewish man identifying himself as a resident of a city outside Be'ersheba, after which he was granted entry.
The man was told by the cashier that the restrictions of the facility “are for certain populations, not for you.”
After the report was aired, the Association for Civil Rights in Israel sent a letter to the Be'ersheba police calling for them to open a probe against the facility. Police initially said that such cases are usually treated as civil cases, but following additional requests by ACRI attorneys they decided to open a criminal investigation.