Topic: Gender and Democracy

Israeli Elections 2019 – Round Two

Between triumph and failure lay only six weeks: On the night of April 9, 2019, Benjamin Netanyahu was celebrating with his followers as the shining winner of the Israeli parliamentary election. Once again, Netanyahu seemed to have made it, despite allegations of corruption and a broad-based opposition campaign against the continuation of the Israeli Prime Minister's right-wing coalition. On May 30, however, Netanyahu had to admit his failure –  he had failed to forge a viable coalition within the six-week deadline. In order to prevent the Israeli president from giving the opposition candidate the task of forming a government, the newly established Israeli parliament (the 21st Knesset) dissolved in a Likud led maneuver just before Netanyahu’s deadline and voted for new elections on September 17, 2019.

By Steffen Hagemann, Romy Shapira, Elisheva Gilad

Articles

Poll: Most Israelis have a positive view of Jewish-Arab relations

A ‘Local Call’ poll shows a broad range of areas where Jews and Arabs see the benefits of cooperation. But that doesn’t mean Jewish Israelis are ready to let Arabs hold positions of power, namely joining the government. The surprising bit: most Arabs would support their parties joining an Israeli government.

By Dahlia Scheindlin

Right-wing Parties in the 2019 Israeli Elections

The 2019 Israeli elections will be determined on the issue of how many right-wing parties pass the 3.25% threshold and what their relative strength will be vis-à-vis the left bloc. Who are the rightwing parties, how did the religious and ultra-religious parties become “the natural partners” of Netanyahu's ruling Likud party, and what is the subtle interplay between them in view of the 2019 elections?

By Gayil Talshir

Women, Security and Israeli Politics – Going Backwards

Based on international comparisons, Israel is in a 'good' spot in the middle. The number of women in the Knesset, the Israeli parliament, reached a record high last year, but even then they accounted for only 30% of all Knesset Members (34 out of the 120 Knesset members). The first quarter of 2019 catches Israel at the height of an election campaign. However, it is already projected that following the elections the number of women Members of Knesset will be even lower. And, as everyone knows, the head count tells only part of the story.

By Anat Saragusti

National Elections 2019 – Status Report from the Perspective of the Arab Minority within the Israeli Citizenry

April 9, 2019, is the date set for elections to State of Israel’s 21st Knesset. These elections are important and challenging from many aspects, but this article will focus mainly on the perspective of the Arab minority within the Israeli citizenry. This group constitutes approximately one fifth of the state’s citizens and approximately 16.5% of eligible voters.

By Ameer Fakhoury

Center Parties and Power Change in Israeli Politics

A prerequisite for democratic rule is a realistic chance of power change. The path to power change in Israeli politics, the widely held belief suggests, is passing through the centrist parties. Is being a ‘centrist’ party merely a strategic position on the Left-Right axis? What does this position mean ideologically? Why is power change that comes from the center short-lived? And what does all this entail for Israeli democracy, in the context of the 2019 election?

By Gayil Talshir

Publications

Handbook of Organizational Gender Consultation and Intervention

EN

The Handbook of Organizational Gender Consultation and Intervention, published in 2019 by the Van Leer Jerusalem Institute, is the first guide of its kind. Its aim is to provide a professional toolbox for men and women operating as agents of gender equality in modern organizations, either formally (appointees, consultants, and individuals responsible for equal opportunity and gender equality) or informally (as feminists aiming to promote change in the organization or in their institutional field). The Handbook is based on the understanding that promoting gender equality in an organization is a process of representing, recognizing, and granting weight and power to women’s point of view regarding organizational practices. Such practices that have exclusionary ramifications are made possible by the exclusion of women’s point of view from the planning and decision-making processes that shape organizational practices and day-to-day realities. Hence, the long journey toward gender equality in organizations is also the journey of the perspectives of women working in the organization—from the margins of the organization’s “attention” to the organization’s power centers where decisions are made. How can this journey be successfully managed?

The Handbook of Organizational Gender Consultation and Intervention is based on many years of research. It offers a rich toolbox that includes knowledge, know-how, strategies, and organizational interventions to promote gender equality and social justice in organizations: from the process of hiring to work arrangements, from the processes of tracking to the prevention of sexual harassment, from remuneration to leadership in the organization.

New trends in human trafficking which exploit the asylum system in Israel

Since 2016 there has been a sharp rise in the number of Ukranians and Georgians applying for asylum in Israel. Data collected by the Hotline for Refugees and Migrants (HRM) shows that Israeli entities, including human resource companies, are involved in this rise by spreading mis-information in the the Ukraine and Georgia about the possibility of working legally in Israel. They charge large sums of money as agents’ fees, and they may also be involved, to varying degrees, in selling fake documentation.

Knocking at the Gate - Flawed Access to the Asylum System due to the influx of applicants from the Ukraine and Georgia

Knocking at the Gate – Flawed Access to the Asylum System due to the influx of applicants from the Ukraine and Georgia

Since the start of 2016, Israel has seen a sharp rise in the number of Ukrainian and Georgian citizens applying for asylum. Data collected by the Hotline for Refugees and Migrant (HRM) shows that Israeli entities are involved in the increase in the number of migrants from these countries, and that they include human resource companies, which spread misinformation in the countries of origin about working legally in Israel by exploiting the dysfunctional2 asylum system. They charge high fees for mediation and are allegedly involved in selling fake documents. The emerging picture is that of a new channel of human trafficking3 .

Due to the backlog at the Population and Immigration Authority’s (PIBA) Refugee Status Determination (RSD) Unit in Tel Aviv, all asylum seekers now face limited access to the asylum process. Despite the extended period during which the authorities have had to serve an ever growing population, the necessary changes have yet to be made. Every night, dozens of people wait outside the offices of the RSD Unit in harsh physical conditions hoping to be first in the queue the following morning in order to submit their asylum application.

What we want

Our Gender and Democracy program seeks to enhance a comprehensive democracy that provides an inclusive, participatory system that ensures full civil and human rights.
Realizing that gender is a fundamental factor in shaping societies, we try to promote a political culture that prioritizes Gender Democracy values and practices on all levels.

For more information please contact Romy Shapira: Romy.Shapira@il.boell.org