Poll: Most Israelis Would Turn In Isolation Violators

Health Minister Rabbi Yaakov Litzman with Professor Daniel Hershkowitz at the Sheba Hospital. (Health Ministry)

Most Israelis would turn in a neighbor who violated rules on self-isolation after being suspected of being infected with coronavirus, a poll by the Israeli Society for the Advancement of Hygiene said Tuesday. A total of 78% of Israeli adults in a representative poll said they would inform authorities if a neighbor or acquaintance who was supposed to be in their homes were caught outside.

The Health Ministry has ordered Israelis who recently traveled to a number of Far East countries to remain in their homes upon return to Israel for at least two weeks. Failure to do so could subject violators to criminal prosecution, as authorities do everything possible to keep infections from spreading in Israel. Yediot Acharonot reported that a number of individuals have already been marked for prosecution for leaving their homes during their required isolation period.

Despite the threat of prosecution, many Israelis believe that the rules on self-isolation will be widely violated, the poll showed, with 49% believing that travelers returning from targeted countries would not remain at home. And although more than three quarters of Israelis said they themselves would turn in violators, 55% said that other Israelis would not do so.

As of now, Israelis who return from a number of Asian countries – China, Japan, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Macau, South Korea and Singapore – are required to self-isolate for at least two weeks, until it becomes clear they were not infected with coronavirus. Travel warnings have also been issued for travel to Thailand, Australia and northern Italy, with the Health Ministry considering adding the latter two to its list of countries requiring Israelis to self-isolate upon return home.

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