The Jerusalem Municipality has issued a safety protocol that instructs kindergarten teachers and custodial staff to deny entrance to people belonging to “minority groups,” a commonly understood Hebrew code that implies “Arabs.”
The manual distributed to Jerusalem kindergartens and preschools states that “outsiders may not enter kindergarten premises,” further stipulating that “as a rule, entrance is not permitted to members of minority groups.”
The Racism Crisis Center, affiliated with the Reform Judaism movement, last week drew attention to the discriminatory language of the manual. “Arabs in Israel are viewed as dangerous as it is, even in the absence of any real and specific indication that they pose a potential threat. As a result, they become immediate suspects, and are targeted, more than any other sector, due to alleged security reasons which are based on religious and ethnic stereotypes,” the group’s statement said.
Writing on Twitter, Hadash MK Aida Touma-Sliman said last week “the municipality said the language will be amended but who knows what else we’re in for if a racist like Smotrich will head the Education Ministry?.” Racist MK and settler Bezalel Smotrich, who was elected to the Knesset as part of the Union of Right Wing Parties faction, is known for his far-right views. He is expected to be given a ministerial portfolio in Benjamin Netanyahu’s next government.