PM holds Ethiopian baby at Knesset 390.
(photo credit: GPO)
The cabinet marked International Women’s Day at its meeting Sunday by approving
a plan to increase participation of women in local government, and discussing
recommendations to stamp out the exclusion of women in the public
International Women’s Day is commemorated each year around the
world on March 8.
Gila Gamliel, the deputy minister for the advancement
of women, will be charged with trying to increase the participation of women in
local government, and will be given a NIS 2 million budget to raise awareness
and develop projects that will give women the tools needed to get into local
According to material presented on Sunday, women make up 50.5
percent of the population, yet only 12% of the 3,132 local and regional council
members are women. Moreover, there are only six female heads of regional or
municipal councils – or only 2% – out of 256 such positions around the
Gamliel said the government’s efforts to increase female
participation in the local municipalities was designed to “promote equality and
to bring about a significant increase in the participation of women in setting
the agenda in the various communities.”
The Cabinet also discussed the
recommendations of the committee headed by Culture and Sport Minister Limor
Livnat on preventing the exclusion of women, including dealing with the
complaints that reach the Authority for the Advancement of the Status of Women
hotline, and an advertising campaign to increase awareness regarding the
exclusion of women.
These recommendations will be added to others in the
process of being implemented.
Those include: Civil Service Commission
directives issued against the exclusion of women at Government and State
ceremonies; The Transportation Ministry’s establishment of a hotline to deal
with instances of the exclusion of women on public transportation. The ministry
will also require transportation companies to post signs banning such exclusion,
and will instruct drivers on how to deal with violators; The Religious Services
Ministry will instruct burial societies, the Chief Rabbinate and religious
councils to ban the prevention of women from participating in funerals for
relatives, or from delivering eulogies.
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu
said at the cabinet meeting that Israel would not tolerate the exclusion of