Bill encouraging women in politics advances

Parties to be given more state funding if more candidates are women.

June 21, 2010 04:12
1 minute read.

woman. (photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski/The Jerusalem Post))


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The Ministerial Committee on Legislation okayed a bill on Sunday that would give parties more state funding if 35 percent of their Knesset candidates are women.

Likud and Labor ministers voted for it. Finance Minister Yuval Steinitz and Justice Minister Yaakov Neeman opposed it, along with ministers from Shas, who said they would appeal the decision.

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The bill was cosponsored by the head of the Knesset Committee for the Advancement of Women, MK Tzipi Hotovely (Likud), and Labor MK Einat Wilf and was drafted with the Power to Women non-profit organization.

Hotovely and Wilf expressed confidence that the bill would pass in the Knesset plenum. The ministers’ approval on Sunday sends it to the Knesset with government backing.

“The struggle to advance the State of Israel to openness and liberty is taking place on many levels simultaneously, and encouraging more women to enter politics is one of them,” Wilf said. “This was an important victory on the way to a breakthrough for women in politics in Israel.”

There are currently 22 female MKs out of 120, but the number is expected to grow soon, when journalist Nino Absadeze enters the Knesset in place of Kadima MK Eli Aflalo, who is leaving to co-chair the Jewish National Fund/Keren Kayamet Le’Israel.

No faction is currently 35% female. The bill states that once the Knesset becomes 40% female, the bill will be automatically canceled.

In the previous Knesset, a similar bill was proposed but unlike this bill, it included fines for parties that did not field enough female candidates

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