Religion Magazine

Proposed Law: Refusing to Work on Shabbos

By Gldmeier @gldmeier
It looks like Yesh Atid might get the rare passage of a law proposal in an anti-Yesh Atid coalition..
MK Aliza Lavie (Yesh Atid) has proposed a law that would allow secular people and traditional people to refuse to work on Shabbos, and it would be illegal to fire them for their refusal.
Currently the law requires anyone refusing to work on Shabbos to base the refusal on religious belief and to submit an affidavit stating his religious opposition. This means only actively religious people are legally able to refuse to work on Shabbos without risking getting fired.
source: Kikar
Proposed Law: refusing to work on Shabbos
This is surprising considering that for the most part it is illegal to operate businesses on Shabbos, with exception. So a business owner can illegally make his employees work, illegally, and they cannot refuse to work, illegally, because they are not religious.
Even in a business that is operating legally on Shabbos, the current proposal, if it passes, will do away with such discrimination on religious basis and allow people to equally benefit from the day off and not be forced to work.
This law has agreement from both sides of the bench and MKs from the coalition are signed on it as well.
Interestingly, the law was prepared for Lavie by the "Reform Center for Religion and State". I would expect, based on history, the Haredi parties to reject the proposal, despite what looks like a law they should/would agree with, just to prevent the Reform from gaining a victory of sorts with a successful law proposal on a religious issue. I don't know what they will do, but it will be interesting to see if they cooperate on this because of the law itself being in line with their ideals, or if they will reject it because of where it came from.
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