Levy. 'Pikuach nefesh wasn't an issue'

Synagogue goers fend off female paramedic

Haredi worshippers prevent Ruti Levy from entering Jerusalem synagogue after calling Magen David Adom emergency services when man faints during prayers. 'I wanted to save a person and they wouldn't let me,' Levy says

Magen David Adom paramedic Ruti Levy was rushed Friday along with two other unit members to a synagogue in Jerusalem's Givat Shaul neighborhood after a man fainted in the site.


However, upon arrival she was prevented from entering the room and aiding the patient when ultra-Orthodox worshippers shoved her out claiming "a woman is prohibited from entering."


Levy, a 48-year-old lawyer and senior paramedic in Magen David Adom for the past 18 years wasn't physically injured during the incident, but was forced to let her two colleagues treat the man themselves inside the Satmar Hasidic synagogue.


"The three of us arrived, the men came in first and as I was about to enter – I was stopped," Levy told Ynet.


"I tried to get inside anyway but they shoved me back, said it wasn't necessary and kept pushing until I reached the stairs," she related, and noted the haredi men spoke in Yiddish, a language she does not follow. "I called Magen David Adom and asked for backup since it creates a problem if one team member is missing."


According to Levy, this was not the first time she received such treatment from members of the ultra-Orthodox community. "I was once rushed to a Mikveh and wasn't allowed in there either. The man who required treatment eventually died.


"The whole issue of Pikuach Nefesh apparently isn't an issue for these people, they are just unbelievably fanatical. They didn't think about anything that moment except preventing a woman from entering the synagogue," she said. 


"I'm not a young girl, I wore a long-sleeved garment which was modest," she said and noted "I didn't take offence, but I got irritated and angry. I wanted to save a person and they didn't allow me."


It was reported that the condition of the man who required treatment is improving.  


פרסום ראשון: 04.09.10, 12:30
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