woman with torah 224.88.
(photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)
Women’s and social advocacy groups filed a petition to the High Court of Justice
on Wednesday against Justice Minister Yaakov Neeman, demanding that he clarify
why a woman wouldn’t be able to vie for the position of director of the
Alternatively, the petition in the name of The Rackman
Center for the Advancement of the Status of Women at the Bar-Ilan University,
Israel Religious Action Center (IRAC), Kolech Forum and other groups, calls on
the minister to determine that the law’s wording, which currently does not
enable a woman to apply for the job, is not constitutional and against women’s
Kolech calls to appoint female rabbinical judges
The petitioners also request that the court order appropriate
representation for women on the advisory committee to appoint the head of the
rabbinical courts, which was formed by Neeman.
In June, Rabbi Eli
Ben-Dahan’s term as head of the rabbinical courts, a post he held for some 20
years, was brought to an end following the implementation of recently instated
government regulations that set time limitations on the tenure of public
The petition came after the rabbinical court administration
published a tender for the position over the weekend, requiring that applicants
be eligible for appointment as rabbinical judges or city rabbis.
cannot fill either of these roles, and this legal condition creates inherent
discrimination against women, according to the petition.
Two women have
already expressed a will to vie for the position.
Shapira-Rosenberg of IRAC stressed that the petition was a direct continuation
of the High Court ruling of 1987, which determined that there was no halachic
limitation to a woman serving on a religious council, since the nature of such
work was largely administrative.