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Photo: Haim Zach
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Photo: Haim Zach
Rabbi Yosef’s son: Sephardic girls discriminated against
Rabbi Yaakov Yosef joins fight against discrimination of eastern-origin girls in haredi education, calls for use of civil courts instead of religious haredi tribunals
Discrimination against haredi girls of eastern origin at seminaries and schools of independent education, which is manifested in many not being accepted into schools, triggered an unprecedented attack Sunday on the part of Rabbi Yaakov Yosef, Rabbi Ovadia Yosef’s son.

 

He was featured on the haredi radio station, “Kol Haemet” (the voice of truth), and urged an appeal to civil courts on the matter.

 

"A terrible situation has been created whereby those heading the schools and seminars are defying the Torah Greats and are doing as they please," Rabbi Yosef said.

 

“I hereby rule that there is nothing wrong with taking such cases to legal proceedings, since they don’t adhere to the Halacha or Torah, and so it is best to turn to the court and any entity in order to stop the shame,” he continued.

  

The haredi community doesn’t normally turn to civil proceedings, but instead relies on religious tribunals that make rulings based on the Torah. For this reason, Rabbi Yosef’s announcement was considered a rare and ground breaking step.

 

People aren’t aware of their rights 

Rabbi Yosef spoke out following action by the “Youth of the Halacha” organization which was established in 2001 in order to address existing problems in the Haredi educational system, including the discrimination against Haredi girls of eastern origin at seminaries and schools of independent education.

 

Yoav Lalom, one of the organization’s heads, emphasized that the organization did not intend on eliminating the entire system and said, “This is an excellent education system. But as haredi’s we know things need fixing where there is a lack of attention.”

 

“They play with parents with the goal of tiring them and the parents have to endure long months of moving back and forth while there daughter has no framework. The parents suffer and that is an unforgivable crime,” Lalom said.

 

Lalom explained that the main reason for the organizations initiative was that the Sephardic community doesn’t know how to stand up for itself and claim what is rightfully theirs; in this case, their daughters right to attend school.

 

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