In a diverse society such as Israel’s, we would expect that occasionally there would be friction between different people on the basis of the social variations between the groups to which they belong. We often see that people are discriminated against negatively or positively because they belong to a particular gender or to a particular ethnic or religious group. An examination of the results of the 2016 Social Survey conducted by the Central Bureau of Statistics, reveals that there were more people in the city of Jerusalem who responded that they encountered high levels of discrimination in almost all of the categories (types of discrimination) examined, than there were in Tel Aviv-Jaffa, Haifa, and the general population.

Close to 22% of respondents who live in Jerusalem said that they have encountered discrimination based on the religious group to which they belong, as opposed to about 9% in Haifa and in the general population, and about 7% in Tel Aviv. There were also a much larger percentage of respondents from Jerusalem (18%) who said that they had experienced discrimination based on nationality, as opposed to Haifa (12%), the general population in Israel (10%), and Tel Aviv-Jaffa (7%).

One of the main reasons for the differences between the populations in Jerusalem and the other cities, is that Jerusalem is the city with the most diverse population. There is a large Haredi population residing in Jerusalem (about 34% of the Jewish population) and a large Muslim population (about 36% of the total population in the city). The high percentage of Arab residents in Jerusalem (37%) as compared to the entire country (21%), Haifa (11%), and Tel Aviv-Jaffa (4%) explains the high percentage of respondents who encountered instances of discrimination based on nationality in Jerusalem. While only 8% of the Jewish respondents in Jerusalem indicated that they encountered discrimination based on their nationality, more than 38% of the Arab respondents said that they experienced this kind of discrimination. Therefore, it is reasonable to assume that a higher percentage of Jerusalem residents will encounter instances of discrimination based on religion or nationality as compared to people in all of Israel and in the other cities, where the percentage of Haredi people and Arabs is lower. Despite the great difference in percentages among Jerusalem and Israel and the two other largest cities, with respect to discrimination based on nationality, the survey revealed that from the percentage of respondents who were asked whether they encountered discrimination related to their nationality at work, only a low percentage (3%) both in Jerusalem and in the rest of the country, reported that they encountered discrimination related to their nationality at work. The only area where the survey found that residents of Jerusalem encountered less discrimination than was encountered in Tel Aviv-Jaffa was in the area of discrimination based on age. About 10% of the residents of Tel Aviv-Jaffa responded that they encountered age-based discrimination, as opposed to 8% of the residents of Jerusalem, and 7% of the residents of all of Israel and of Haifa.  Also at the work place a higher percentage (6%) of the residents of Tel Aviv-Jaffa encountered age-based discrimination than did residents of Jerusalem (about 4%).

Translation: Gilah Kahn

The Social Survey, Central Bureau of Statistics
Statistical Yearbook of Jerusalem