Religion Magazine

Rabbanut Changing Racist Policy Against Ethiopians

By Gldmeier @gldmeier
After Uriah Elkayam reported about the Rabbanut policy of checking the Jewishness of Ethiopians working in the food industry in Kiryat Gat, a lawsuit was filed with the Supreme Court against the Chief Rabbi of Kiryat Gat for being responsible for this policy.
Just prior to the case being heard in the Supreme Court today, the Rabbanut issued a new policy directive. The Rabbanut has decided that they will no longer investigate the jewishness of any person just because they are members of a certain sect or community - they won't look into someone just because he is Ethiopian or Russian. It will be prohibited form now on. The only time it will be acceptable to investigate someone's Jewishness will be if there is cause for suspicion about a specific person, such as practicing tenets of another faith or religion, but not because of his connection to a group. And even then, when a suspicion arises about a specific person, they would have to investigate the Jewishness of all the workers of the factory and not just of that one person, so as not to target him and single him out. The will apply to workers in the food industry in a factory using a mehadrin hechsher.
sources: Uriah Elkayam Twitter, Kipa and Srugim
This makes a lot of sense, especially considering their Jewishness has already been checked and confirmed when they immigrated to Israel and when they married (if they are married), and there is no need for such wholesale investigations, except for perhaps in individual cases. There is no reason to operate on a racist policy that is not even necessary. It is far better to treat people with respect, and in cases where a question is raised, they will be able to check into it if deemed necessary.
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