Bill to Prohibit Location-Based Business Discrimination Passes First Reading

YERUSHALAYIM -

The Knesset on Wednesday took up the issue of discrimination against Yehudah and Shomron, though this time not as practiced by other countries but by companies inside Israel itself.

In a preliminary reading, the Knesset approved legislation to prohibit location-based discrimination. Nationwide businesses that refuse services to certain parts of the country would be liable to penalties up to 50,000 shekels, without proof of damages, The Jerusalem Post reported.
The bill, proposed by MK Shuli Moalem-Refaeli (Bayit Yehudi) states that customers who face location-based discrimination could sue businesses for up to NIS 50,000, without proof of damages.

“Whoever lives over the Green Line,” explained MK Shuli Moalem-Refaeli (Jewish Home), “knows well the policies of many companies that deliver products or provide services and discriminate against a broad population group…based on the customers’ place of residence.”

The bill would apply to businesses with at least 100 employees, if they provide services in one location, but not another that is equidistant from it. Exception would be made for legitimate security and other concerns.

Moalem-Refaeli, who lives in Gush Etzion, pointed out that residents of Arab villages and people living in remote areas of the periphery often face the same problem.