Inside The Industry Where People Get Paid To Harass Others

They call his family and bang on their doors, leaving them messages of pure intimidating silence, and sometimes threatening them

Vaad Harabanim ,

Knocking at 2AM
Knocking at 2AM

Yossi, the owner of a Jerusalem butcher shop, stepped in early to take some inventory one morning and was shocked by what he found: A man sleeping on the floor. The man, however, was not just any stranger. It was his star employee, Reb Avraham Yitzchak Segal. Woken by the sound, Segal jumped off and brushed off his clothing with embarrassment. Avraham Yitzchak was called in for an early shift that morning, and his car was in the shop. Buses weren’t running at this time, so with the blessing of his wife at home he had slept in the store to make sure he would not be late. Yossi smiled slyly - This was classic Avraham Yitzchak Segal. Segal took his job more seriously than any employee he had ever had. That’s because he never took it for granted.

Avraham Yitzchak Segal had been ill for several years and was physically incapable of working. During that time, his life turned into a living hell. He was unable to support his wife and 13 children, and they sank into poverty and debt. Recently, Avraham Yitzchak recovered and was able to begin training to work as a ritual slaughterer. He dedicated himself to the work fully, thrilled to have the opportunity to take care of his family again. With determination and patience he rose to the top of the industry and began travelling internationally for work. It would be enough to change his family’s entire lives, if it were not for the crippling debt that no salary could possibly make a dent in.

Segal’s story gives a disturbing glance into the industry of aggressive creditors in Israel. Day and night, they call his family and bang on their doors, leaving them messages of pure intimidating silence, and sometimes threatening them with violence. Mrs. Segal refuses to be home alone, as she genuinely fears for her life when they come. With sweat on his brow, Mr. Segal works day and night, but cannot catch up. Now they have reached the point they fear the most: Their home will be foreclosed on, and in days, they will be homeless with 13 children. The youngest are only babies.

Mr. Segal’s recovery and hard work are an inspiration: A testament to ‘shalom bayit,’ and a loving father’s dedication to doing all he can to provide for his kids. Money is being raised by charity organization Vaad HaRabbanim to free him from his debt, so that the Segals can live safely, and Reb Segal can support his family freely. If they do not get the help they need, they will lose their home, and he is likely to lose his job as well. The family is watching their fund’s progress closely, and praying for that most elusive thing: A chance.

The Segal family Vaad Harabanim