The Gur Hasidic movement in recent days has issued a decree that any member who volunteers in EMT services or the police would be barred from sending his children to Gur institutions, Kikar Hashabbat reported Tuesday, noting the decision followed a feverish discussion.
According to sources in Gur, this prohibition is directed mainly at young yeshiva students under the age of 30, who have been joining Hatzalah, MDA, and auxiliary police in large numbers, apparently without the approval of the movement’s spiritual leadership.
Parents who are members of Gur will be asked in the coming days to sign a commitment form declaring that they are not volunteers in any of the above organizations, and that if they are found to be serving their local communities in such manner, they would be expelled from the movement.
This move is viewed as extremely unusual, and out of character for the Hasidic community at large, which honors and cherishes its volunteers in rescue organizations – and some choose community service as a substitute for enlisting in the IDF.
Deputy Health Minsiter Yakov Litzman (United Torah Judaism) is a senior member of the Gur movement.