The Coalition on Wednesday afternoon defeated by a vote of 54 to 53 the Ankle Monitors bill to prevent domestic violence by allowing supervision in cases with increased risks to women or children and to prevent the need to place them in a shelter as protection from an attacking man.
After the bill was defeated, opposition MKs protested with handcuffed hands, shouting “shame,” and “women are not a free-for-all.”
The Ankle Monitors bill was submitted to the previous Knesset by Likud MK Keren Barak, to enshrine the use of electronic ankles to enforce court protection orders to prevent domestic violence using advanced GPS software. The police would be able to monitor the movements of individuals against whom the court issued a restraining order.
National Security Minister Itamar Ben Gvir and MK Simcha Rothman recognized the importance of the bill but wanted to pull it for an amendment that would protect innocent men from vindictive complaints.
Following a discussion in his office with representatives of the Israel Police, Israel Prisons Service, the Welfare Ministry, and the Public Defender’s Office, Minister Ben Gvir decided to add to the bill a clause requiring judges to ask for a risk assessment of the man, before deciding whether to place him in an ankle monitor, to alter the current opposition bill which does not require the risk assessment.
The revamped bill will also likely include a clause requiring that the man be convicted at least once for the court to enforce a monitor.
Minister Ben Gvir said in response: “We must do everything to prevent the possibility of human scum hurting women, including with ankle monitors and even more severe measures. At the same time, it’s important to prevent false complaints resulting in damage to innocent men.”