Apartment opened for domestically violent men seeking treatment

The Welfare Ministry opened the first of four apartments to help violent men get treatment without forcing their victims from their homes.

Welfare Minister Meir Cohen, Deputy Director-General of Social Services Iris Florentine and Ramat Gan's Mayor Carmel Shama Hacohen cut the ribbon, opening the first apartment in Israel designated for perpetrators of domestic violence who are getting treatment. (photo credit: YUVAL YOSEF/GPO)
Welfare Minister Meir Cohen, Deputy Director-General of Social Services Iris Florentine and Ramat Gan's Mayor Carmel Shama Hacohen cut the ribbon, opening the first apartment in Israel designated for perpetrators of domestic violence who are getting treatment.
(photo credit: YUVAL YOSEF/GPO)

The Welfare Ministry opened an apartment for men who are being restrained from their families because of domestic violence in Ramat Gan on Tuesday. 

This is the first apartment of four that are planned by the Welfare Ministry. The next one is set to open in Beersheba, the third will be in Jerusalem and the last will be in the north.

The need for these apartments became more evident during COVID-19 when men who were removed from their family's home because they were violent had nowhere they could go. In order to prevent their return to the family that was being protected from them, the Welfare Ministry offered to fund their stay in designated motels on the condition that they agreed to go to therapy.

The success of the initiative led the Welfare Ministry to decide to make it permanent and set up designated apartments.

"After too many years in which women were forced to leave their homes as a result of domestic violence against them, the efforts of the Welfare Ministry have been focused on flipping the equation," said Welfare and Social Security Minister Meri Cohen. 

 A new apartment was opened in Ramat Gan for perpetrators of domestic violence who are getting treatment. (credit: YUVAL YOSEF/GPO) A new apartment was opened in Ramat Gan for perpetrators of domestic violence who are getting treatment. (credit: YUVAL YOSEF/GPO)

"Last week we progressed in proposing the bill that would require violent men to go through treatment before returning to the community for the last stage, and today we opened the first apartment for restrained men in treatment. It's a move that's right both therapeutically and morally. 

"I am happy that the first apartment was opened here in Ramat Gan, a strong city with developed social services that has the ability to successfully realize innovative ideas like this."

"The committee is putting the treatment of men at the center of attention, and in the last week, we took two significant steps in the bill proposal and the opening of the apartment," said Deputy Director-General of Social Services Iris Florentine who also heads the Inter-Office Committee to Battle Domestic Violence. 

"We believe in this project," said Ramat Gan's Mayor Carmel Shama Hacohen. "We thought it was right to set up the apartment in the community and not in an isolated place. It needs to be inviting and comfortable so that the men come. 

"In cooperation with the Welfare Ministry, we will succeed in convincing men to come and get treatment here. Ramat Gan will fully partner with the ministry and any new innovative idea."