For the second year in a row, number of haredi men working drops

Director of Israel Democracy Institute says drop is the result of increased stipends and benefits.

Arutz Sheva Staff,

Haredi men working
Haredi men working
Lior Mizrachi, Flash 90

Israel's Central Bureau of Statistics (CBS) released a report showing that the percentage of haredi men in the workforce dropped over the past year to just above 50%, Channel 2 reported.

According to the CBS, 51.7% of haredi men were employed in 2016, whereas 50.3% were employed in 2017.

The percentage of gainfully employed haredi men stood at 35.5% in 2002, rising to 40% by 2008 and peaking in 2015 at 57.5%.

Previously, the Israeli government aimed for 66% of haredi men to be working by 2020. However, according to the Bank of Israel, this goal may not be achieved until 2030.

The Israel Democracy Institute's Dr. Gilad Malach believes the drop is due to the fact that married yeshiva students once again qualify for welfare, and daycare subsidies for working women are no longer contingent on the husband working at least 10 hours a week. In addition, the stipend for married yeshiva students doubled. There is also a special stipend for yeshiva students whose wives do not work.

However, Dr. Malach noted that some of these benefits applied in previous years as well.

Nevertheless, he said the subsidies "allow haredi men to postpone entering the workforce" and that "when the right hand helps haredim find employment and the left hand causes them to remain in yeshiva, the result is a standstill and even a decline in the number of employed haredim."


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