IRAC has published a new 96-page report called “Excluded, for God’s Sake: Gender Segregation and the Exclusion of Women in the Public Sphere in Israel.” 

If you’re the type of person who likes getting good news before bad news, start reading on page 75. That’s where we talk about all the progress and the victories we achieved these past several years on women’s rights. We have changed Israel’s gender landscape in ways that seemed unimaginable only five years ago.  Court victories. Direct government intervention. Pending legislation to criminalize hate crimes against women. Grass-roots initiatives. There’s a lot to be proud of.

But there’s no getting around it. This is still a difficult report to read.  Religious extremists continue to humiliate and intimidate women in every imaginable segment of public life. The sheer volume of incidents chronicled in our report is staggering:

Forced gender segregation and discrimination on buses and airline flights, in cemeteries, HMO clinics and educational settings, and at public events of all kinds. So-called “modesty signs” telling women what they can and cannot wear and where they can and cannot walk. Blotting out women’s faces and bodies in public advertisements. Silencing women’s voices at concerts and on the airwaves. Prohibiting women from praying freely at public holy sites. Depriving women of opportunities to serve in the IDF and in political life.

The report includes detailed recommendations to government ministries that, if adopted, will make Israel’s public sphere more accessible to women, and clear guidelines what you can do if you experience or witness illegal gender segregation in Israel.  

To download the report click here.

To share it with your family, friends and colleagues click here.