Friday, December 16, 2011
Woman's picture removed from mikveh
Poster promoting breast cancer awareness torn off wall at Jerusalem ritual bath due to 'immodest' photo
The exclusion of women in Jerusalem has reached the ritual bath.
Y., who works in the capital's Religious Council, was diagnosed with breast cancer three years ago and managed to overcome the disease after a strong battle.
About a month ago, she decided to hang a poster promoting breast cancer awareness at the entrance to her workplace, in a bid to try to spare other women from experiencing what she went through.
Several minutes later, she was approached by one of the Council's senior rabbis, who demanded that she remove the poster immediately, claiming that the picture of the woman on it was immodest and would offend the public.
An insulted Y. removed the poster and went off to hang it in a State-owned mikveh in central Jerusalem. But the ad didn't survive there either, and was torn off the wall by one of the site's visitors less than an hour later.
As a religious woman, I also believe in all the separation issue. But matters of health have never been part of the argument," Y. said this week. "Many women work at religious council and ritual baths, and they deserve to receive information about breast cancer.
It hurts me that I was prevented from doing so through halachic claims. I begged, but no one would listen."
The Ministry for Religious Services said in response, "We invite those who put up the ads to hang them in designated places and not in irrelevant places."