On Sunday, dozens of hareidi men will enlist in civilian national service for the first time since the Tal Law was overturned. A total of roughly 1,300 hareidi men may join civilian service until August.
Civilian service is a non-mandatory alternative to military service for those exempt from the army, or ineligible to join. Many civilian service volunteers are young women from the religious-Zionist community.
A growing number of hareidi men had been volunteering for civilian service, but their enlistment was frozen with the Supreme Court’s decision to throw out the Tal Law, which had granted an exemption from IDF service to full-time Torah students.
Without the Tal Law, it was believed hareidi men would be required to enlist, and would not be eligible to volunteer for civilian service.
Those who join the service Sunday will not be eligible for the benefits formerly given to hareidi national service volunteers, because they are no longer considered “released from service.”
The Tal Law has not yet been replaced with a law arranging hareidi military service. A minority of hareidi men continue to enlist in IDF units that aim to respect their lifestyle.