JERUSALEM (AP) — Israel’s largest medical center and health care workers from hospitals across the country have spoken out against calls by Benjamin Netanyahu’s allies for laws allowing discrimination against LGBTQ people in hospitals and businesses.
It was part of a broader push back against remarks made this week by religious Zionist politicians calling for legal discrimination against LGBTQ people.
Netanyahu’s new government — the most devout and hardline in Israel’s history — is made up of ultra-Orthodox parties, ultra-nationalist religious factions and his Likud party. It will be sworn in on Thursday.
Earlier this week, two Netanyahu allies from the ultra-nationalist religious Zionist party said their faction sought to amend anti-discrimination laws to allow businesses and doctors to deny services to LGBTQ people on the grounds of their religion. Serve.
Religious Zionist lawmaker Orit Struck said her party seeks changes to the country’s anti-discrimination laws, including allowing religious health care providers to refuse to treat LGBTQ patients “as long as there are enough other physicians to provide care.”
On Monday, Sheba Medical Center posted a video on Instagram of healthcare workers from across the country, saying “we treat everyone”. Doctors and administrators at the Rambam Medical Center in Haifa and the Barzilai Hospital in Ashkelon issued similar statements.
Netanyahu later rebuked Straker’s remarks, saying the new government would not restrict LGBTQ rights.
Yated Neeman, a newspaper affiliated with an ultra-Orthodox party in Netanyahu’s coalition, published an editorial against religious Zionist politicians, saying they “defame Judaism around the world” and branding the future government “a A government that persecutes Arabs, minorities and discriminates “against people on grounds like religion. ”
Several Israeli companies said they would not work with businesses that discriminate against customers on religious grounds.
Bank Discount, Israel’s third-largest lender, said on Monday that its board had decided “not to extend credit to businesses or institutions that discriminate against customers on the basis of religion, race, gender or sexual orientation.”
Israeli cybersecurity firm Wiz has expressed “serious concern” over rhetoric by religious Zionist politicians and said it will require companies that hire its services to pledge not to discriminate against their clients.
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