Heartwarming news for the coming winter: Thousands of public housing tenants will receive solar water heaters, replacing the electric heaters in current use. This means a savings of hundreds of shekels per year in electricity costs.
She is a single parent with four-and-a-half year-old triplets and works full time as a cashier. The NIS 3,400 [$800] she earns is way below what she needs for her family without having to resort to receiving food from charitable organizations.
Poverty, like pornography, is a matter of geography. And like pornography, you get the standard pictures: children with stomachs swollen from starvation in Africa; amputees begging in Asia; mothers living without hope in South American slums. Who are the three billion nameless people living in poverty with whom a worldwide movement has declared solidarity today on behalf of their deteriorating living conditions?
"The critical thing is to help people find their way out of poverty, and this is not easy. They need first to be empowered, to believe they can do it", says Sari Revkin, founder and general manager of Yedid, an association created 10 years ago with a vision and a mission to emphasize the empowerment of needy people.
Some 70,000 mortgage holders annually can not meet their monthly payments and are liable to be evicted from their apartments. Instead of ignoring the problem and hoping that the bank will forget about it, when a problem arises, one should go immediately to the bank and try to make an arrangement. The lawyers at YEDID explain how this works.
The State took away even before it gave: Some 200,000 needy people were currently supposed to be receiving notice that they will receive a discount in their electricity bills. However, the Treasury Ministry is doing all it can to annul the discount. MK Moshe Kahalon, initiator of the law, will appeal to the Supreme Court.
The Yedid community empowerment organization and Tel Aviv's Academy of Commercial Communications copywriting school are joining Holocaust survivor groups in their fight to help the estimated 120,000 Israeli survivors who live in poverty.
Gentlemen, the problem is not the ability of large families and people with limited income to pay 10 or 15 agorot [a few cents] more for each loaf of bread. The problem lies in another place altogether.
State Comptroller Micha Lindenstrauss has been asked by a community advocacy group to look into the Education Ministry's policy of offering free tickets on school trips to Poland without any apparent criteria.
The Knesset approved the third reading of a bill Monday calling for solar powered water heaters to be installed in all public housing apartments so that poverty stricken families will be able to reduce their electric bills.
This week, State Comptroller Micha Lindenstrauss published a report named, "Aspects of the Wisconsin Program." Lindenstrauss' report focuses on a number of significant failings in the Wisconsin Program [welfare-to-work] and how these were to the detriment of Program participants. The State Comptroller's office made an effort to publicize the report before a decision was taken on the Program's future.
Sari Revkin, executive director of the community empowerment organization Yedid, says that "One of the major problems [faced by Israeli society today] is the lack of belief in the government. Starting before the Second Lebanon War, and highly exaggerated following it, the people of Israel saw that those they thought would protect them did not provide for or take care of them as promised."
Rahat, the only Bedouin settlement big enough to merit the designation of "a city," with a population of 40,000 residents, has only one bank branch (Mercantile-Discount). No other bank is willing to open a branch there. An estimated 10,000 people live in the surrounding area.
In spite of the drastic cuts in the public housing budget, the Jewish Agency is continuing to receive monies from the sale of public housing apartments for repayment of debts. YEDID would like these monies to be used to benefit public housing.
A house wares and health product marketing company successfully convinced many innocent new immigrants to put out thousands of shekels for organic pots, and then disappeared. The naïve purchasers received no pots – organic or otherwise – but were left with threats from the Repossession authority.
The Yedid nonprofit organization therefore urged Housing Minister Meir Sheetrit, Defense Minister Amir Peretz and Supervisor of Banks Rony Hizkiyahu yesterday to take steps to help Sderot residents who wish to leave the town.
MKs Colette Avital and Zevulon Orlev are not waiting for the "quick solution" for the worsening poverty of Holocaust survivors promised by Minister of Social Welfare Yitzchak Herzog. They will present a bill according to which each survivor whose income totals less than NIS 4,000 ($950) per month will be entitled to a government stipend of NIS 2,000 per month.
We have received countless letters and calls about the plight of needy Holocaust survivors. We promise not to let up on this subject, and to present updates here as well as on the “Citizen Patrol” television program to be broadcast next week on Channel 2.
Many teenagers in Ashkelon are unable to join the trip to Poland because of the high cost. YEDID demands that the Ashkelon Municipality and the Minister of Education fund the trip for students for whom the cost is prohibitive.
We have been promised that the minimum wage would be raised to $1,000. However, before this dream is fulfilled it seems that for some, even the current minimum wage is an unattainable dream. Many businesses in Nazareth pay their female workers only NIS 6 ($1.50) per hour.
In a shimmering luxury hotel overlooking the Mediterranean Sea, Israel’s banking and financial elite mingled over cocktails recently with foreign investors as they watched Donald Trump on a live telecast praise the strength of the Israeli market.
The purpose of the long list of reforms set up by Secretary of the Treasury Avraham Hirschson was to reduce Israel's social gap. "There was a lot of talk," says Deputy Director of YEDID, an organization working to empower the weaker classes, "but there is one problem with what is going on right now: with all the reforms, no jobs have been created, and this worries me.
Nearly a month since former tourism minister Yitzhak Herzog announced his willingness to take over the vacant Social Affairs portfolio, the Knesset plenum Wednesday finally approved Herzog's appointment to the position, along with several other new cabinet ministers.
EDID: In the past few years, hundreds of families have been served with legal proceedings because of non-payment of their children's cell phone debts. The Knesset Council for the Rights of the Child will deliberate on a priori limitation of such payments.
Parents do not realize that the law is on their side: A business deal made without the knowledge of one of the parents can be cancelled.
Children and teenagers buy cell phones without their parents' knowledge and/or make unlimited use of them, and when the bills arrive, parents find themselves deep in debt.
One of the main differences between the Wisconsin Works program in the United States and the Israeli version is the demographic profile of the participants. In the United States, the focus is predominately on young black single mothers. But in Israel, the clients are men and women, often older than 40, many of them immigrants or Arabs. Some have physical or mental disabilities or limited Hebrew-language skills.
The law for free electricity for the needy has taken off. Yesterday, Chairman of the Knesset Finance Committee, the Minster for Infrastructure and the directorate of the Israel Electric Company agreed on the immediate implementation of the law. What this means: the law will take effect in the next few months even before its final approval by the Knesset plenum.
During the last two years, tens of thousands of people needing help have called the Ministry of Welfare emergency hotline. Because of budgetary problems, the formerly free hotline will be privatized, operating 24 hours a day. . . for a fee. Ministry of Welfare people say, "We will reconsider the issue."
The Treasury has expressed its opposition to a bill requiring installation of solar hot water heaters in all public housing units. The Ministerial Committee for Legislation approved the bill submitted by YEDID and MK Ran Cohen (Meretz) two weeks ago, but the Treasury has appealed. The issue will be voted upon again today in the Committee.
Public criticism convinced Minister of Industry, Commerce and Employment Eli Yishai to make changes in the Wisconsin [welfare-to-work] Program. Unemployed people who find work will be eligible for monetary grants.
A hi-tech computer system aimed at improving the flow of information between the various departments at the National Insurance Institute (NII), simplifying the process by which benefits are distributed, has been scrapped after seven years of development and an investment of NIS 30 million.
Proponents say it's still only a pilot and there are bound to be problems. Critics say it should never have been started in the first place and being run, like it is, by private companies means it stands no chance of being fair or desiring to help people.