WAC’s Executive Director meets OECD delegation:

“The government's promises on employment of Arab women remain unfulfilled”

“The government’s promises on employment of Arab women remain unfulfilled”

The Workers Advice Center (WAC-MAAN) today presented members of the OECD delegation, currently visiting Israel, with a strong indictment against government policy on all issues regarding the Arab population, especially those concerning integration of Arab women into the workforce. WAC’s executive director, Assaf Adiv, told the five-member delegation: “The Israeli government is not fulfilling any of its commitments to the OECD. Despite the profusion of decisions during the last two years,” he continued, “and despite far-reaching commitments to take on Arab workers in the public sector and promote the employment of Arab women, there has been no change on the ground, and the situation continues to deteriorate. The expected budgetary cuts in development and welfare will lead to further deterioration and are liable to bring about social unrest in Arab towns.”

It will be recalled that OECD, consisting of some 30 developed industrialized nations, decided to accept Israel as a member in 2010. This was conditional on a number of steps which the government pledged to take in order to reduce social inequality and increase employment rates among Arab women and ultra-Orthodox men. The purpose of the delegation now visiting Israel is to examine the situation by meeting independent bodies and hearing their assessments of government policies.

Thus the delegation members, led by John Martin, OECD Director for Employment, Labor and Social Affairs, requested a meeting with WAC representatives and with the director of the Adva Center, Shlomo Swirski. Swirski was very critical of government policy on all issues concerning the Arab population, emphasizing the utter lack of investment in job creation in Arab towns.

WAC’s executive director, Assaf Adiv, presented a dire picture of unemployment and poverty in Arab towns, describing a reality of violence and social destruction. According to Adiv, an increase in the employment of Arab women in agriculture could be a powerful way to change this situation, but in practice farm labor continues to be imported, mostly from Thailand. While only a few jobs are open to Arab women, thousands are crying out for work.

For seven years now WAC has placed Arab women in agricultural jobs, but it is clear that unless the importation of cheap, unorganized labor from Thailand and elsewhere is stopped, farmers will not make a significant increase in the hiring of Arab women. Only an immediate halt to the importation of foreign workers—not only in agriculture, but also in personal care and construction—will open tens of thousands of jobs for Arab women and men.

Adiv also emphasized the tough situation faced by Arab academics in finding work. He noted, however, that for them new jobs must be created, whereas a halt to the importation of labor will open up jobs that already exist. The integration of thousands of men and women into the labor market, even at the level of manual labor, will increase incomes in the Arab sector and improve the chances of coming generations. Jobs for tens of thousands of Arab women will empower them, improving their independence and status within Arab society and Israeli society as a whole.

For further information, contact Ms. Roni Ben Efrat: 972-50-4330-038



Fighting for peace and cooperation between Palestinian and Israeli workers in times of war

Following is a talk by Yoav Gal Tamir that was given to the Global Labour Institute School under the headline “Young Union Leaders Imagining International Trade Unionism”. The GLI gathering of 100 activists took place at the end of November near Paris. MAAN’s representative Yoav Gal Tamir talked about the union’s role today, after the October Massacre by Hamas and Israel’s retaliation. Tamir also emphasized MAAN’s unique role as a union that works in Israel, defends and organizes both Israeli and Palestinian workers.

The East Jerusalem Project

Solidarity across borders: residents of East and West Jerusalem work together in crisis and build the foundations of a common future

Jerusalem after October 7 is a city marked by suspicion and fear. The city economy has been hit hard, and many in both the Jewish and Palestinian communities prefer to avoid public spaces. In the immediate days after the war began, checkpoints around the city have been shut, cutting off the Palestinians living in the outskirts of the city. That would be around one third of the city’s residents who are left in a dire economic situation. Amidst this, dozens of organizations – both Jewish and Palestinian – begun working to provide relief. MAAN Workers Association (MAAN) joined the Jerusalem’s civilian Emergency Center, especially the branch set up for the East Jerusalem residents. Together, these organizations in both sides of the city create an enclave of sanity, bringing hope in solidarity.


אנא כתבו את שמכם המלא, טלפון ותיאור קצר של נושא הפנייה, ונציג\ה של מען יחזרו אליכם בהקדם האפשרי.

رجاءً اكتبوا اسمكم الكامل، الهاتف، ووصف قصير حول موضوع توجهكم، ومندوب عن نقابة معًا سيعاود الاتصال بكم لاحقًا

As an organization committed to the rights of workers without distinction of religion, race, nationality, gender, or profession - democracy is our essence. We strongly oppose the authoritarian laws that the extreme government of Netanyahu, Lapid, Bennett, and Smotrich is attempting to impose.

Without democracy, there are no workers' rights, just as a workers' organization cannot exist under dictatorship.

only a victory of the democratic camp will enable a discussion on the Palestinian issue and lead to an alternative solution to occupation and apartheid while ensuring human rights and citizenship for all, Israelis and Palestinians alike. As long as the apartheid regime persists, the democratic camp will not succeed in defeating Israeli extremists. Therefore, we work to involve the Arab and Palestinian society in the protest.

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