Israel’s Justice Minister Tzipi Livni ordered her ministry on Thursday to draft legislation that would make the gender-based segregation of women illegal.

“Discrimination against women in public places, in public services, cannot be allowed,” she said in a radio interview.

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She wrote on her Facebook page, “Removal of women from the public sphere is damaging not only to their dignity, but also to a society that aspires to equality, and it has no religious or moral justification.

A day earlier, Attorney General Yehuda Weinstein advised government ministers against the exclusion of women in the public sphere. The advisory is not binding, but is part of a process in Israel of restoring gender equality after years of tension over the public role and treatment of women.

Issues that have been raised in recent years include women being forced to sit at the back of the bus on lines frequented by Haredi Jews and to wear modest dress in and around Haredi neighborhoods.

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3 COMMENTS

  1. Not everything that looks like "discrimination" is discrimination. Sometimes it's a choice. Some people prefer schools that are separate for boys and for girls. Others want mixed schools. Why not leave all the options open, like now? Many people want to pray with only women around or only men, at the kotel or elsewhere. Those who want to do things differently have been offered a separate place to do that, but they've rejected it. How about respecting what many people prefer?

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