August 29, 2012
Lawsuit filed against haredi radio station for excluding women
The religious women’s organization Kolech filed a class-action lawsuit against a haredi Orthodox radio station for excluding women.
The nearly $26 million lawsuit filed Tuesday in Jerusalem District Court against Kol Berama alleges that the station does not hire women as interviewers or invite women to be interviewed.
“From the start, the station adhered to a patently illegal policy, and women’s voices were completely silenced,” the suit says. “At all hours, only men are heard in the station’s programs. A woman who wishes to be interviewed is refused, and is requested to send a fax to the station, which is read by the presenter.”
The station went on the air in 2009; the Reform movement had asked the Israeli Supreme Court to prevent its launch.
Earlier this year, Israel’s Second Authority for Television & Radio ordered Kol Berama to interview women in official positions or who are experts in their fields. It also called on the station to allow women to speak on the air for four hours a week, Haaretz reported.
The station claims to have hundreds of faxes from female listeners that are satisfied with the station’s format.