Haredi (ultra-Orthodox) cities have the lowest proportion of fines for violation of government coronavirus regulations despite having some of the highest morbidity rates, according to a new study sponsored by Israel Hofsheet (Be Free Israel), an organization that struggles against religious coercion and for pluralism.The number of fines issued in the largest haredi cities, including Bnei Brak, Modi’in Illit, Betar Illit and Elad, is proportionally some 18 times lower than in the 50 cities with the highest rates of fines to COVID-19 patients, Israel Hofsheet said.For example, 15,294 residents of Tel Aviv contracted the coronavirus as of January 12, and 23,101 fines have been issued by the police for various infractions of Health Ministry coronavirus regulations in the city, a rate of 1.51 fines per resident infected with COVID-19, the study said. In Haifa, 0.83 fines have been issued per each resident who has contracted the virus, and in Petah Tikva the rate is 0.48 fines per infected person.But the rate of fines compared to infections in the haredi population centers is far lower, it said.In Modi’in Illit, the rate is 0.077 fines per resident who has contracted the virus. In Bnei Brak the rate is 0.14, in Betar Illit it is 0.19, in Elad it is 0.18, and in Rechasim it is 0.16.Haredi cities have been the sites of some of the most severe COVID-19 outbreaks in the country, with most of them having been listed as red cities for substantial periods throughout the duration of the pandemic.The rate of fines per infected resident is far higher in Arab cities and towns, which have also experienced heavy outbreaks of the disease. The Bedouin city of Rahat, in the South, has a rate of 2.3 fines per resident infected with COVID-19. Arrabe in the Lower Galilee has a rate of 3.0, and Jisr e-Zarka, near Haifa, has a rate of 5.65, the study said.Israel Hofsheet’s research was conducted by Tal Elovitz and was based on Justice Ministry data for the number of fines issued and Health Ministry figures for the number of COVID-19 infections in various municipalities.