Residents of some areas of Jerusalem are unwilling to accept demographic realities, understandably so according to some, but nevertheless, as the chareidi population continues to grow, the dati leumi and secular residents are beginning to feel threatened.
Another neighborhood of the capital joining the anti-chareidi movement is Armon HaNatziv, a primarily secular neighborhood in the southern area. Yehuda Ben-Yosef, who heads the local council is angry, explaining the city is planning to open a chareidi kindergarten in 10 Alexander Robowitz Street and his office has not event been informed. What really elicits his ire is the fact that the local board just completed NIS 50,000 in renovations in the building, planning to make it a community youth center. Now they learn the city has other plans, after the money was spent.
The city maintains the area is a pluralistic one, which is indeed primarily secular, but containing educational facilities for all, including chareidi kindergartens. Ben-Yosef and others insist they are in desperate need of the youth center, a framework for educational recreational activity for the area youth.
As is the case in Kiryat Yovel, Kiryat Menachem, Ramat Eshkol and N’vei Yaakov, the resident of Armon HaNatziv opposing an influx of chareidim, vow to fight to prevent the opening of the kindergarten.
Jerusalem City Hall stated it will not harm the planned youth center and a final decision is pending as alternative sites are being investigated.
(Yechiel Spira – YWN Israel)