Yakov Litzman: 'No choice but to close schools until things calm down'

Min. Yakov Litzman urges school closures, says children can't adhere to coronavirus guidelines. 'Schools are main source of infection.'

Ben Shaul ,

Yakov Litzman
Yakov Litzman
Olivier Fitoussi/Flash90

Just prior to the Coronavirus Cabinet's meeting on Monday morning, former Health Minister Yakov Litzman (UTJ) sent a letter presenting his stance with regards to the current rise in COVID-19 infections.

In the letter, Litzman, who is currently serving as Israel's Housing Minister, states that he believes schools should be closed immediately, since they constitute a source of infections.

"My opinion is that we must close schools, which are the main source of infection," he wrote. "It's clear to everyone that young children cannot be expected to wear masks and adhere to the proper and necessary rules of hygiene. Therefore, there is no option other than to remain at home until things calm down."

"I believe that at this time, we should place limits on bathing at the beach, and on gatherings in places of entertainment," he added, noting that the coronavirus guidelines have been violated repeatedly in these places.

Litzman also questioned why the government is discussing dividing students into "capsules" in school, but refuses to discuss implementing a similar process for synagogues. He also slammed the lockdowns in haredi areas, claiming that cities with similar infection rates but which were not haredi, were not locked down.

"We must ensure that every decision is equal, without any connection to who the population is," he said, emphasizing that decisions should be made "out of consideration for the public's health, and with maximum transparency."