File photo: Divorce..
(photo credit: REUTERS)
The names and photographs of men who refuse to give their wives a get, a Jewish bill of divorce, will be made publicly available, if new legislation Zionist Union MK Revital Swid plans to submit becomes law.
The bill is part of ongoing efforts to fight the phenomenon of agunot, or chained women, whose husbands refuse to give them a divorce and, according to Jewish law, cannot remarry. Israeli rabbinical courts can issue sanctions, such as a ban on leaving the country, against recalcitrant spouses in order to persuade them to give a divorce.
“Women denied a divorce may as well be dead,” Swid said. “Their lives are behind bars created by their spouses.”
The Zionist Union MK has focused on fighting cyber-bulling and Internet shaming, and she found a way to redirect the phenomenon towards a good cause. According to Swid’s proposal, which she says has the support of the Chief Rabbinate and rabbinical courts, a publicly-viewable online database would feature the names and photos of anyone who has had a restraining order filed against him because of a refusal to give a get.
Swid said the database would show the public the people who are “imprisoning their spouses in marriages that they do not want.”
“The path towards eradicating the [aguna] phenomenon is long, but the bill I am proposing… is a significant step in exposing the ugly faces of those who refuse to give a get,” Swid stated.