This Week in Jerusalem 380966

Peggy Cidor’s round-up of city affairs.

Hadassah Medical Organization’s woes are far from over. (photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM/THE JERUSALEM POST)
Hadassah Medical Organization’s woes are far from over.
Greater Jerusalem
Following a secret meeting on November 3 between Mayor Nir Barkat, the Interior Ministry’s head of the district committee Dalit Zylber and Yehuda Regional Council President Moshe Dadon, it was decided that Tzur Hadassah would be added to Jerusalem’s jurisdiction.
The new part of the city is located inside the Green Line, 12 km. southwest of Jerusalem’s current boundaries, and has about 8,000 residents.
The plans are to build 5,000 housing units, and the area has enough plots to add even more.
Barkat’s plan to enlarge the city by annexing surrounding villages and small towns is not new – it was on his agenda from his first term as mayor.
But his initial project, Mevaseret Zion, didn’t work because the residents fiercely opposed the idea. It’s too early to say how the residents of Tzur Hadassah will react, who are mostly former Jerusalemites who moved because of unaffordable housing.
But Jerusalem’s advantage is clear – a significant addition of Zionist, young and economically productive residents to the city. It will significantly affect the city’s demography and change the city’s character from being poor, Haredi and with a large and growing non-Jewish minority.
Another advantage is the possibility to add new houses in Jerusalem without having to use more plots beyond the Green Line, a step that has become so highly sensitive.
Hadassah healing? Less than three months after a recovery plan was signed for the Hadassah Medical Organization, things are back to the bad old days. A clash between the staff and the hospital’s management has led to a declaration of a new work dispute between the two parties.
Sources from among the doctors say the management had compiled a list of the 30 doctors who will be dismissed, according to the recovery plan, which clearly indicates that it was in fact a list of those who spoke too freely or didn’t cooperate enough with the management. Israel Medical Association chairman Dr. Leonid Eidelman requested to see the names on the list before the doctors are fired.
A large part of the conflict is due to the fact that most of the senior doctors are not supporting Prof.
Tamar Peretz’s appointment as acting directorgeneral of Hadassah’s two medical centers, an appointment made by the Hadassah Women’s Zionist Organization of America, which owns the hospitals.
Poochie park
The municipality has inaugurated a new dog park on Sokolov Street. City Councillor Hanan Rubin, the man who made this possible, invited Bobby, Lassie and Rexy for the opening earlier this week.
The park, which cost NIS 750,000, is accessible for the disabled too, so those in wheelchairs or blind people can use it for their trained dogs. The new park is only one among many others planned by the city for the well-being of children, disabled persons and pets, besides other family playgrounds.
Dog parks exist in Ramat Sharet, Sacher Park, San Simon and Arnona. Next on the list are Gilo, the city center, Pisgat Ze’ev, French Hill, Beit Hakerem and Ramot. In the Sokolov park there are also recycling containers and new trees.
Comedy for a change
Jerusalem will host an international conference this month dedicated to the power of comedy to make changes in our lives. Comics, satirists, TV scriptwriters – anyone connected with humor and the ways to bring it on stage or on screen – will gather and show us how comedy can make a positive change in our lives.
On November 21-22, the power of humor will give attendees hints and samples about techniques that work. Some of the participants will include director of BBC Television Danny Cohen, TV and film writer Lee Eisenberg, executive producer of The Daily Show Steve Bodow, and Matzav Ha’uma host Lior Schleien.!registration/c17yc
Family and Co.
Yeru-Shalem, a non-profit organization working for a more diverse Jerusalem, is launching a Shabbat-Tarbut (“Culture Saturday”) this week.
At the gathering, which is free, local personalities and performers will play Arik Einstein’s classic hits.
There will be a wide array of activities, adapted for young adults, children of various ages and families.
The event will take place in the Ben-Shetah pedestrian mall and is adapted for non-religious attenders.
The aim of this event is to open up public spaces across the city for quality leisure activities, in cooperation with the local neighborhood councils and community centers. Theater, singing, children plays and more await the public. The organizers say this is the first event in a long series for the benefit of secular residents who wish to spend Shabbat with their families and enjoy cultural programs.
Saturday, November 8, from 10 a.m. at the corner of Ben-Shetah and Shlomtzion Hamalka streets.
Art for a living
What happens when an artist is invited to display his works in front of a huge audience? In most cases, this is a great opportunity, one that will boost an artist’s exposure. And this is what will happen for three consecutive weeks this month, in the framework of the annual “Hamshushalayim” weekends in the capital. The problem is, as Deputy Mayor Ofer Berkovitch – who holds the culture and arts portfolio at city council – found out, the artists are not paid, and on top of that, are even required to advertise themselves.
Berkovitch says this is “unacceptable” and called on the Jerusalem Development Authority and the municipality to see that this is fixed before the event starts. Art will be on display in hotel lobbies and other venues included in the Hamshushalayim program, and Berkovitch says that “even if these artists have the benefit of being revealed to a large audience, they still deserve to be paid for their participation.” Berkovitch has pledged that he will request a change in the current decision, adding that “exactly as we wouldn’t invite a plumber to do work without paying him, we should do the same with our local artists.”