Gisha Public Advocacy Coordinator: “The window of opportunity for women in Gaza is shrinking”

Noa Galilil on “London et Kirshenbaum.” Screenshot by Gisha.

June 6, 2018. Gisha Public Advocacy Coordinator Noa Galili appeared yesterday on Israeli current affairs news show “London et Kirschenbaum” on Channel 10, following a discussion held by the Israeli Knesset’s Committee on the Status of Women and Gender Equality on the impact of the closure on women in Gaza, initiated by Gisha. Galili presented information collected by Gisha, which was presented before the Knesset committee: the unemployment rate among women in Gaza has risen dramatically, as has the number of women seeking employment in the Strip; at the same time, the percentage of women employed in Gaza’s traditional sectors of fishing and agriculture has dropped to only 4%, compared to 36% in 2007.

Galili elaborated on some of the ways in which the closure on Gaza, tightened by Israel in 2007, affects the lives of women in the Strip: “Work opportunities for women in Gaza are scarce. The people used who to work outside the Strip are now forced to seek employment inside Gaza, further shrinking the small window of opportunity for women in Gaza’s workforce. Even the women who break through the glass ceiling, which is difficult to begin with, are faced with the concrete ceiling of Israel’s closure.”

Galili responded to the interviewer’s statements on the timing of the discussion in the Knesset committee, given the current security situation, saying that “A decade of closure and restrictions on the movement of women and men from all walks of life are closely linked to the security situation. Women from the Strip who we have daily contact with say it, and so do Israeli military officials: As long as the bottleneck of movement in and out of Gaza isn’t alleviated, neither will the situation in Israel.”

To watch the interview (Hebrew) from minute 5:05, see here.