Court: No to haredi income benefit

Judges say income guarantee for 10,000 kollel students "unlawful."

dorit beinisch 311 Ariel Jerozolimski (photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)
dorit beinisch 311 Ariel Jerozolimski
(photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)
The High Court of Justicet ruled 6-1 Monday that in the next government budget the minimum income guarantee benefits payment for 10,000 kollel yeshiva students will be canceled.
Ten years after the case was first brought to the court's attention, the High Court declared the legal provision that established the special benefits payment to be unlawful and could not be included in the 2011 budget.RELATED:'State to blame for lack of haredim in workforce'Mofaz: Livni was mistaken to attack haredim
High Court of Justice President Dorit Beinisch wrote in her majority decision that "there is no place [in the law] to distinguish between kollel students and other students who learn in different institutions."
The majority decision was based upon the explicit exclusion in the Minimum Income Guarantee Law of minimum income guarantees for students of higher institutes learning and yeshivot.
Interior Minister Eli Yishai (Shas) responded to the news by stating that "the High Court ruling is a sharp blow to the spiritual status quo in Israel."
Yishai suggested that Shas would propose a new bill that will reinstate the minimum income security benefit for kollel students.
On the other hand, MK Nitzan Horowitz (Meretz) hailed the legal decision. "An important step to ensuring real civil equality in Israel has been made," said Horowitz.