Kolech, the Jewish Woman's Voice organization, has approached Justice Minister Yaakov Ne'eman and urged him to appoint a woman director for the Rabbinic Court Administration, following a decision to end Eli Ben-Dahan's term as director-general.
In a letter sent to the minister Sunday, the group said, "We turn and ask you to lead an historical move in respect to the management of rabbinic courts by appointing a woman to this position."
Kolech chairwoman Ayelet Vider Cohen added, "It is no secret that courts, which mainly discuss divorce cases, mostly deal with cases in which women are in the weaker position, not just because of the predominantly male dayanim (religious judges) panels, but primarily due to the halachic state which grants husbands the upper hand in marriage leading to various offences to women."
Vider Cohen stressed the importance of the presence of a female, professional voice in the rabbinical courts system which would significantly improve the fair conduct of the courts and dayanim allowing women's voices to be heard as well.
Kolech is asking the minister to work for the appointment of a woman with the necessary skills for the role, based on the 7th amendment to the National Labor Law, which established fair representation and affirmative action as acceptable means for the abolishment of discrimination between the sexes.
Copies of the letter were also sent Deputy Minister for the Advancement of Women MK Gila Gamliel and MK Tzipi Hotovely, chairwoman of the Knesset Committee for the Advancement of Women.