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Ad campaign in Jerusalem against employment of Arabs
Petition filed to High Court of Justice against the Welfare and Labor Ministry's Equal Employment Opportunity Commission after it ordered movement to take down ads it says violate employment equality opportunities law.
A movement leading an ad campaign in Jerusalem against the employment of Arabs has petitioned the High Court of Justice against the Welfare and Labor Ministry's Equal Employment Opportunity Commission after the government agency ordered it to take down its ads.

 

 

The campaign was launched in the wake of a wave of terror attacks in the capital, which began in October 2015. At the time, the attacks stirred public debate, leading to several demonstrations in Jerusalem against the employment of Arabs.

 

The ads, which were posted in several streets in Jerusalem, read: "Business owner, do you have an employee who expresses joy at the murder of Jews? Are you unsure about his intentions? Legally, he cannot be fired, that is racism. You have to employ a worker even if he endangers your life."

 

One of the ads
One of the ads
 

The movement behind the campaign signed the ads with "The E=qual Works Opportunity Commission," a name similar to that of the government agency.

 

The Welfare and Labor Ministry's commission sent the movement a letter expressing concern the campaign calls for the discrimination of Arab employees in violation of the Employment (Equal Opportunities) Law.

 

After an exchange of letters and a meeting between the movement and the commission, the movement put out a new ad: "Business owner, do you have an employee who expresses support of terror attacks? Expresses joy at the murder of Jews? Are you unsure about his intentions? Unfortunately, reality shows there is cause for concern. You don't have to employ a worker who might endanger your life or that of your customers. Seek legal counsel."

 

The commission opposed this wording as well, writing in a letter to the movement: "This phrasing still implies there should be a distinction made based on nationality, which might lead employers to discriminate based on nationality. The commission's concern is that such ads – which put a negative emphasis on Arab employees collectively – could prove to be explosive. It was made clear to you that any publication that implies there should be a distinction made between employees or candidates who are Jewish and those who are not is in violation of the Employment (Equal Opportunities) Law and must be taken down."

 

The movement, in response, decided to petition the High Court of Justice against the government agency, which is due to respond to the petition in two weeks.

 

But even before that, the movement decided to disseminate ads again and post them all over Jerusalem.

 

The Welfare and Labor Ministry said in response, "The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission in the Welfare and Labor Ministry will exhaust all options at its disposal, and it intends to turn to the police and file a complaint against the impostors. This is a false, delusional and racist campaign done at the expense of the commission and has no connection to it."

 


First published: 02.09.18, 22:06
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