Task Force Activities

Rising Crime in Israel's Arab Communities: Urgent Concern and Complex Realities | Feb. 17
February 17, 2021

Since 2018, Arab citizens have cited rising rates of violent crime as their biggest community concern. Police-minority relations, economic gaps, and the high percentage of Arab youth neither in higher education nor the workforce are some of the underlying causes of this complex and sensitive issue. This past year, COVID-19 led to further increases due to school closures and economic strain strengthening black-market and organized crime.

Why did crime in Arab society escalate in recent years? What are the challenges related to police enforcement and deterrence? How does this issue affect daily life in Arab communities?

Image eventJoin the IATF and Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh on Wednesday, February 17 at 12 pm ET for an in-depth discussion with Aya Mana’a, Director of the Majd al-Krum Community Center, and Makbulla Nassar, Mandel Fellow, activist, and radio broadcaster, for a discussion of these issues in Israel’s Arab society and the Karmiel-Misgav region.



Event Details:
Wednesday, February 17
12:00 PM Eastern
Register Here

Elections Update: Arab parties and candidates on final political lists
February 12, 2021

Media imageThursday, February 4th, marked the deadline for registration of political parties running in March elections, setting the seal on any potential new political unions and ratifying others' splits. A total of 39 parties registered with the Central Elections Committee, but only about a dozen hold a real chance to pass the threshold and enter the next Knesset.

This election has seen unprecedented outreach by Jewish-led parties to Arab voters, resulting both in a high number of Arab candidates across political parties, as well as a splintering of the Joint List, which has represented Arab society in recent years. Therefore, while new Arab lists and candidates are entering the field, the overall representation of Arabs in the Knesset is expected to decrease. 

Israel Update | January 2021
February 3, 2021


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Equity in Education in the COVID-19 Era | February 2
February 2, 2021

Media imageEDUCATORS worldwide have described 2020 as a “lost year.” Yet the impact of COVID-19 on education looks different across socio-economic gaps, often exacerbating pre-existing disparities. What do education challenges look like in different communities? What are some of the long-term implications for minority and disadvantaged populations? What can be learned from different regions?

Join us on Feb 2 for a discussion moderated by Dina Kraft, Journalist and Podcast host, with Andrea Campbell, Boston City Council Member, and Nasreen Hadad Haj’Yahya, The Israel Democracy Institute, about current barriers to education equity in their communities, how COVID-19 affected them, and possible solutions.

February 2 at 12:00 pm Eastern
Register Here 

Fourth Elections Update | Joint List Splinters as Arab Electorate Courted Right to Left
January 29, 2021

Media imageAs Israel approaches its fourth elections in less than two years, political discourse on Arab citizens has turned on its head. Prime Minister Netanyahu, whose previous campaigns alienated Arab voters and delegitimized cooperation with Arab leadership, is now running a positive campaign courting Arab voters, visiting Arab cities, apologizing for past remarks, and calling for Arab political inclusion.

Following suit, nearly every political party left, right, and center, has reached out to Arab voters, with many adding or promising to add Arab candidates to their list. While PM Netanyahu’s political motives are widely debated, one thing is clear: taboos about Arab political inclusion and Jewish-Arab cooperation are dissolving.

That said, it is not at all clear that this unprecedented outreach will energize Arab voters or yield significant Arab representation. The Joint List alliance of Arab-led parties, which effectively thrust the overall Arab demand for such inclusion into the mainstream and drove up Arab voter turnout, has now splintered over primarily just how far such political cooperation should go—increasing competition for the Arab vote and decreasing each individual party’s chance to cross the electoral threshold.

Violent Crime Continues to Rise | Arab Society Awaiting Government Plan
January 26, 2021


Violent crime in Israel’s Arab communities rose to a historic high in 2020 with 113 Arab citizens (17 of them women) killed in violent incidents. In 2021, 12 Arabs have already been killed since the beginning of the year. A primary concern of Arab society for several years, the economic strain of COVID-19, which strengthened crime organizations, has prompted numerous protests and calls for government action. PM Netanyahu, now campaigning in Arab society, has promised passage of a comprehensive NIS 5 billion plan.


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