It is hard to believe, but September is over. It consisted moments of grace, hope, excitement and joy, but also of frustration and difficult departures. We choose to share with you, our partners and friends, a selection of these moments – reminding ourselves that - if a tree falls in a forest and no one hears it, it is as though it never fell.
We will start with some good news: September yielded an important and precedent ruling in a case we led, which granted of 40,000 NIS (and 10,000 NIS in legal expenses) to a dentist who was not hired to work in a clinic after refusing to remove her Hijab. Attorney Gadeer Nicola from Kav LaOved represented the dentist in court. The clinic that discriminated against the woman claimed they rejected her "in light of the prevailing reality that exists in the country" and "out of concern for the employee herself." We demanded that the court takes a clear stand in light of the clinic’s discriminatory actions. The court ruled on the plaintiff's behalf stating that: "could we allow an employer to reject dark-skinned job applicant because it is their clients' preference? The answer is negative. Equally, we are expecting clients and employers who prefer to receive service from a dentist without a Hijab, to conquer their preference, otherwise prejudice and unfounded stereotypes will guide our social behavior." We hope that this explicit verdict will make employers think twice before rejecting good and adequate professionals for bigoted reasons. With the beginning of the New Jewish Year – we wish upon the people of this country and every worker an equal, respectable and fruitful year.

Katya came to Israel from Moldova in 2018 to work as a caregiver. She contacted us three months ago with her new employer's son after realizing that they encountered a dire situation.  When her employer’s son requested to extend Katya's visa and arrange the necessary paperwork - he learned that Katya was registered in the Ministry of Interior's system as a worker who had “abandoned her patient”, and was therefore summoned to a hearing before deportation. The son, who appreciated dearly how Katya had been caring for his mother, could not accept this situation.
Following our inquiry into the matter, we learned that her previous employers had employed Katya several months in conditions that amounted to severe and ongoing abuse. She was demanded by the daughter of her former patient to clean the whole house, which was also the residence of the daughter’s family. In addition, she was left to live in a damp, cold room and was demanded to work around the clock doing strenuous physical labor.  Katya was also yelled at for talking with her young children on the phone, and was required to sleep in the same bed with the elderly woman on nights when her husband was not at home.
The patient's daughter threatened to have Katya deported if she did not comply with her whims, until eventually; she broke down and announced that she was leaving.
We presented to the Ministry of Interior the warm recommendations that Katya received from her new patient's son, and showed how easily you can "take revenge" on a resigning caregiver, to falsely accuse her and get her deported. In early September, we received notice that the threat of deportation was removed and announced the news to Katya and her new employer, who is determined to give her a better employment experience. We wish Katya and all the caregiving workers in Israel a more just and equal year.
The number of fatalities and injuries in the construction sector continues to rise. Due to the current political situation Knesset committees are not convening, dramatic decisions are not being made and vital budgets are not allocated.  For the past three years, we have been monitoring this painful reality from every angle and pointing out the systemic shortcomings in the system. One of the major flaws is the lack of indictments of those responsible for violations. Reality is that work accidents do not result in investigations even when the police and the Ministry of Labor investigate the scene and present findings to the state attorney's office.
Seeking to get some answers to this situation, we reached out to the state attorney's office. The data revealed a bleak picture: between 2016 and 2018, the police submitted on to the state attorney 167 investigative files on construction work accidents that occured between 2013 and 2018 – all of them accidents that resulted in fatalities or serious injuries of workers. What happened to these files? 104 of them (62%) have already been closed due to lack of evidence, while 40 of these files that were supposed to be seriously investigated as they concern fatal accidents, were archived.
The relatives of the workers killed will never know who is responsible for the death of their loved ones, and no one in the construction company will pay the price of this negligence. 126 workers died during these years, but only eight indictments were issued.
This is how complete disregard for people's lives looks like, and we intend to respond with the means at our disposal. We wish all construction workers a year of justice, health and safety
We cannot end without thanking you all again – many thanks for the widespread and courageous support during our crowdfunding campaign. We could not have asked for better allies than all of you!
This also happened in September: our struggle to continue receiving civil service volunteers in Kav LaOved ended unsuccessfully. Several wonderful, hardworking and professional civil service volunteers left us this month. Due to the court’s decision, they will not be replaced. Because of the acute and sudden shortage in good people, we are urgently seeking volunteers who will join our devoted teams - who carry the burden of the needs of the communities we assist. New volunteers are welcomed with open arms!

That is it for now. The high holidays are already here and the season's first rain has also drizzled, and it is time to take down the duvets from the higher shelves and see whose of the children's feet grew to require a new shoe size during the long summer. It is time for the fall.
Kav LaOved – Workers' Hotline
Continue helping us show workers they are not alone in their fight for just employment! A monthly donation to Kav LaOved will assist workers in standing up for their rights throughout the year.
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Mercaz HaBshorah
Phone: 04-6082228
Fax: 153-4-6082228

Herzl 18, Floor 2
Phone: 04-8643350
Fax: 04-8644238

Contact us via email at
Tel Aviv
Nahalat Binyamin 75, Floor 4
Phone: 03-6883766
Fax: 03-6883537

All donations will allow "Kav LaOved" to help workers get their rights at work and the money taken from them by their employers. Even a fixed contribution of 10 NIS per month. To donate by direct debit bank or credit card deposit contribution click here. Association account: Bank Hapoalim branch 781 Account 431095 in the name "Kav LaOved". To send a check to the offices of the association via mail: Kav LaOved PO Box 2319 ​​Tel Aviv 61022
Donations to Kav LaOved within Israel are income tax deductible under Section 46. Tax-deductible donations from abroad, by New Israel Fund. For more info: hagar@kavlaoved.org.il
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