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Thursday, March 21, 2013 

This proposed law has potential

Israel Hayom recently told that a new law is being worked on by Hiddush that could be a great help in bettering the status of the country:
Hiddush, an organization promoting religious freedom and equality in Israel, on Sunday distributed its plan of action for creating a civil society with increased freedom of religion and an equal sharing of the burden to Knesset members. Hiddush noted that the new Knesset includes many members, from a broad range of parties, who agree that equal sharing of the burden of national defense is a central issue in Israel today.

The Hiddush plan posits a new Basic Law: Freedom of Religion and Conscience, to be added to the 14 existing basic laws. This law would stipulate that any school that does not teach a full core curriculum in compliance with Education Ministry rules would be denied public funding. The law would also categorize the exclusion of women as a criminal offense, provide equal stipends for each child rather than discriminating in favor of large families, and cancel subsidies for nonworking young men studying in yeshivas. [...]

In addition to the passing of a new basic law, the required implementation of a core curriculum and laws protecting women, Hiddush suggests the legislation of civil marriage, instead of the current law that allows only Orthodox Jewish marriages; the acceptance of all Jewish conversions, regardless of movement, for the purposes of the Law of Return; public transportation on Shabbat; and a decrease in the licensing and supervision requirements of kosher supervision organizations from all denominations.
There are a lot of potentials in their law proposals that could work out very well. Let's hope the parties in the Knesset show a willingness to cooperate here.

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