Summary: Condemned to Unemployment – East Jerusalem Women Struggle for Integration into the Labor Market

From reports spanning many years of WAC-MAAN’s activity in EJ, backed by statistics, we may list the following obstacles faced by EJ women who want to work: (1) In addition...

From reports spanning many years of WAC-MAAN’s activity in EJ, backed by statistics, we may list the following obstacles faced by EJ women who want to work: (1) In addition to a weak education, there is (2) a chronic lack of day-care centers for their small children; (3) they live far from public transportation; (4) Israel’s Separation Barrier cuts off a third of the EJ population (about 100,000) from the rest of the city; (5) their Hebrew is insufficient; and, as said, (6) the jobs that they can get are usually temporary under abusive conditions.

Despite these obstacles, we can identify a number of processes that indicate a dynamic for change: (1) among EJ women who have joined WAC-MAAN, an impressive group of activists has arisen; (2) there is the aforementioned success of the Rayan Center in Shuafat; and (3) other women’s groups have sprung up during recent years. We need actions to build infrastructure on several fronts: a better educational system, a more accessible job market with fair conditions, and solutions for childcare. Given the strong will of the women, such actions could revolutionize life for the better in East Jerusalem.

The report was prepared by Erez Wagner, WAC-MAAN Coordinator for East Jerusalem

 

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