Women's rights campaign to feature on Jerusalem buses

Multiple women's organizations will collaborate with the campaign, including the Israel Women's Network, the WIZO movement, the Na'amat movement, the Kolech organization, and the Emunah Association.

March 3, 2019 01:21
3 minute read.
Women's rights campaign to feature on Jerusalem buses

Rachel Azaria and Oren Hazan spar at a finance committee meeting, January 15, 2018.. (photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM/THE JERUSALEM POST)


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A legal dispute involving MK Rachel Azaria will result in a pro-women's campaign on Jerusalem buses. During the 2018 Jerusalem municipal elections, signs and posters depicting Azaria, who was running for mayor, were repeatedly vandalized due to a picture of a woman being featured, according to Mako.

After the string of vandalism, a legal battle ensued between Azaria and the Canaan Media company which publicized her advertisements on buses. The battle ended with a settlement in which it was decided that Azaria would receive a "compensation campaign" which begins on Sunday, according to Mako news.

The dispute began when Azaria asked for her picture to be hung up again, and, when she was refused, she asked to only pay for the days in which the campaign was active. During the mediation process, the two sides agreed on joint social activities for women in Jerusalem and arrived to understandings in good-faith.

MK Azaria, who will not be running in the upcoming elections, decided that the upcoming campaign of bus ads would include feminist messages next to pictures of prominent women, according to Mako news.

The pictures will be on 50 buses throughout Jerusalem for two weeks, according to the agreement between MK Azaria and Ohad Gibli, the CEO of Canaan.

Multiple women's organizations will collaborate with the campaign, including the Israel Women's Network, the WIZO movement, the Na'amat movement, the Kolech organization, and the Emunah Association.

The campaign is expected to reach its peak on Friday, March 8, on International Women's Day.

Mako news reported that the messages in the campaign will include: "I have a dream that there won't be any more divorce refusers" (with a picture of Azaria), "I have a dream that a woman's wage will be the same to a man's wage" (with a picture of prior MK Limor Livnat), "I have a dream that every woman will feel safe in a public place" (with a picture of Nili Phillip, who petitioned for the safety of woman in public areas in Beit Shemesh), and "I have a dream that sexual violence won't be received with apologetics" (with a picture of Eliana Barbel, who led a social struggle over the right of women to visit springs in Jerusalem).

"We are proud to be part of this campaign in which women inspiring women will be on billboards on buses in Jerusalem," said the Israel Women's Network. "The dangerous phenomenon of vandalizing billboards which display women must stop, and it's about time that law enforcement prevent this phenomenon from continuing in Israel. The exclusion and discrimination of women is illegal in Israel and we support Rachel Azaria in this struggle and call for every woman who experienced exclusion to turn to us."

"In the last decade, I worked for women's rights and against exclusion of women from the public sphere, a struggle which brought about a substantial number of amazing successes in both the High Court of Justice and Israeli society," MK Rachel Azaria said in response, according to Mako news. "Despite this, in the last election campaign in Jerusalem, my pictures were torn from buses and this is another proof that the struggle is still not over. I am happy for the agreements and shared values that Canaan and I reached and on started a joint campaign for International Women's Day, a campaign which calls to turn the dream into reality."

Gibli, the CEO of Canaan, responded that "after we met and discussed matters, and after we checked all the facts together, I would like to retract my harsh statements against Rachel Azaria, based on the understanding that Mrs. Azaria acted for a moral and social struggle."

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