Ministers reject opposition MK’s LGBT rights bill

Proposed legislation would make any law prohibiting discrimination based on gender, age, country of origin, etc. apply to LGBT people as well.

June 15, 2015 21:25
1 minute read.
An activist waves an LGBT flag near Israel's Knesset building

An activist waves an LGBT flag near Israel's Knesset building. (photo credit: REUTERS)


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The Ministerial Committee for Legislation on Monday voted down a bill that would make it illegal to discriminate against LGBT people in any way.

The legislation, proposed by MK Ofer Shelah (Yesh Atid), would make any law prohibiting discrimination based on gender, age, country of origin, etc. apply to LGBT people as well.

“Only Gila Gamliel had the courage to support the amendment,” Shelah pointed out, adding that no other Likud ministers voted in its favor, though some attended last week’s Gay Pride Parade in Tel Aviv.

“Such a simple matter, that all laws prohibiting discrimination should apply to discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity, did not get the approval of the current government,” Shelah said. “On Pride Week, some of the Likud tried to paint rainbows on their faces.

Don’t be fooled: Behind that, you’ll find their true faces.”

In the last Knesset, when Yesh Atid was still in the coalition, the committee approved the bill with support of Likud ministers, but it did not become law before an election was called.

Some laws against discrimination already include sexual orientation, such as the Equal Employment Law, to which MK Anat Berko (Likud) proposed last week to add gender identity.

The committee also rejected a bill by MK Ilan Gilon (Meretz) making it illegal to discriminate in selling or renting a home, based on race, religion, religious group, nationality, country of origin, gender, sexual orientation, ideology, political party membership, marital status, parental status or handicap.

“The government doesn’t have the courage to deal with one of the ugliest phenomena in Israeli society,” he said.

Also Monday, the committee postponed discussion and voting on the Fair Rental Bill, proposed by MKs Stav Shaffir (Zionist Union) and Roy Folkman (Kulanu), so it could be merged with a similar bill Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked plans to propose.

The bill seeks to limit how much landlords can raise rent and mandate minimal living conditions for rental apartments.

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