In 2005 the Interior Ministry issued new guidelines for visa to children of foreign workers: The parents must have entered the country legally; the children were born in Israel, are aged 10 to 18 and are registered in Israeli schools.
Yet the hotline for Migrant Workers said that in spite of the new guidelines, the government is still refusing to grant legal status to eligible children, many of whom face the prospect of deportation.
The hotline added that the government broke pledges to accommodate migrant workers and their children in hostels ahead of their deportation, choosing instead the derelict Tzohar facility where 100 foreigners live in dire conditions.
“At the moment 100 foreign workers are imprisoned in dire conditions,” the hotline spokesperson Rom Levkovitch said.
'Mothers and children jailed'
Levkovitch said foreigners are being kept in small rooms, treated inhumanly and disconnected from the outside world.
“It is illogical that state institutions take part in jailing mothers and children who grew up in Israel, their only home, and speak Hebrew as a mother tongue,” he added.
“The imprisonment of children causes an ineffaceable trauma, and their deportation to a country they have never been to will cause them a culture chock,” Levkovitch said.
The spokesperson of the Immigration Police said that on Thursday "we will meet several people with regards to the suitability of the chosen location for the families."