“Criminal Kiruv” Meretz MK Files New Anti-Religious Bill

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Meretz MK Tamar Zandberg, whose bill to “criminalize kiruv” raised widespread ire, now proposed a new outrageous bill that again targets religion.

Zandberg, who is slated to become part of the new unity government being sworn in on Sunday, proposed that Chareidim who go off the derech be provided with “absorption benefits” – the same financial support that new immigrants are entitled to.

The explanatory memorandum to the proposal states: “Support for those who go off the derech is unofficial, limited, and carried out on a private basis, without any support from the State. Furthermore, Israeli law does not define criteria, in its regulations or procedures, for those who go off the derech.”

“Going off the derech is a personal and complex process, during which and afterward, many suffer from gaps in formal education, lack of money and possessions, and mental and social difficulties. The State doesn’t provide any dedicated assistance for those who go off the derech. This situation is mainly a result of the lack of official recognition of their status and effectively deprives them of the means for social advancement which the State provides to other populations, such as the immigrant population.”

The memo continues to describe in further detail about the difficult situation that those who go off the derech face, such as a lack of a place to live since “most can’t continue living at home and definitely not in the yeshivah where they learned,” which leads to them starting their path “in the secular world” amid a “financial crisis.”

The memo concludes by recommending that the State provide financial assistance to those who go off the derech “to enable optimal acclimatization” to their new lifestyle.

It should be noted that a bill to assist struggling youth or young adults may seem helpful but assisting youth to further distance themselves from their families and communities rather than heal broken relationships is providing a disservice.

(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)


  1. I know that our chevra will know how to gain this system to get benefits. All of the sudden all of benei brak “goes of the D.”

  2. The anti religiousness here is blatant;

    Is it, then, the issue of the government to care for anyone who makes a decision that is fraught with financial difficulty?

    What about someone who decides to BECOME religious? They are in the very same position, sometimes even more difficult since there is not much financial opportunity then (especially with a government that tries to restrict Judaism…the hypocrisy!!).

    And how about someone who decides to move to a new neighborhood…or someone who gets married?? Maybe in situations such as these, where a person finds themselves in tough situations etc. etc. the government should given its citizens benefits?

    Utter hypocritical nonsense…

  3. The Knesset must first pass a law to define “the derech” so that there will be no debate when some wayward neshama goes OTD. Does a litvishe bochur who shows up at the beis medrash in a kipah segurah qualify? What about the young shaliach tzibur in an ashkenaz shtiebel who starts inserting
    “vayatzmach purkanei v’korev moishichei” in kadish? Clearly, like the HOV lanes on an urban expressway, the “derech” must be clearly marked and understood by all.

  4. What a lack of Ahavas Yisroel you show, what is bad about helping poor people who go of the derech? these people lead terrible lives often as they have no education, so something that will help them gain self respect and self love will always be good and ultimately help them find their true path in the long run. Shame on the site for not being able to see the positive and looking to condemn anything at all. Disgusted.