Haredi workers in Jerusalem factories up sixfold since 2000

Manufacturers' Association urges heads of haredi communities in Jerusalem to allow 10% of the yeshiva boys to attain technology training.

haredi working 88 224 (photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)
haredi working 88 224
(photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)
More and more employees from the haredi community have been recruited over the past four years to work in factories in the capital, the Israel Manufacturers' Association said Sunday ahead of Jerusalem Day. "The number of haredi workers employed by the Jerusalem industrial sector has grown by 65 percent over the past four years," said Ran Tuttenauer, chairman of the Jerusalem branch of the industry association. "Today there are 2,600 haredim employed by 250 industrial factories, which constitute 64% of all factories in Jerusalem." Tuttenauer added that since 2000, the number of employed haredim has grown sixfold. Factories across the country employ about 20,000 haredim, out of which 11,000 are women. According to a survey conducted by the Israel Manufacturers' Association in the capital, the majority of haredim are employed in the hi-tech and computer programming industry. In the majority of factories employing haredim, they make up between 2% and 10% of the total work force. Although it was found that 240 Jerusalem factories did not employ workers from the haredi community, it was also found that in 160 factories, about 10% of the work force was haredi and that in 100 factories, haredim constituted up to 50% of staff. Tuttenauer noted there were a number of bodies in Jerusalem that specialized in training haredim for work among others in areas of technology. "I call upon the heads of the haredi communities in and around Jerusalem to allow 10% of the yeshiva boys to attain training in areas of technology and find income in the industry," said Tuttenauer. The total number of employees in Jerusalem stood at 232,600 in 2007, out of which 48% were employed in the public sector, 13% in the business sector and 7% in the industrial sector, according to figures published by the Jerusalem Center for Research.