The overview presented in this document is based on a preliminary but comprehensive review of key data culled in recent years and used by the research community and relevant decision makers. This document brings together data about haredi society from a variety of sources and covers various social, economic and cultural aspects. The document integrates data from major government surveys and various administrative surveys, as well as targeted studies conducted within the haredi community.
Dr. Neri Horowitz headed this project, together with the Institute’s research team, with the assistance of Mr. Benny Pepperman andd Mrs. Merav Greenstein from the Ministry of Economy’s Research and Economics Administration; andd Prof. Zvi Eckstein and the team at the Aaron Economic Policy Institutee.
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The Educational System – In this chapter, data from the Ministry of Education’s reporting systems provide an indication as to the haredi population’s demographic growth relative to other Jewish populations, as well as the geographic distribution of the haredi community.
Higher Education and Vocational Training – This chapter presents key data which give an overview of higher education in the haredi community, as well as the profession of practical engineering and vocational training. In recent years we have witnessed a growing group of haredim who wish to acquire academic degrees and professional certificates, which will help them integrate into the labor market and make a decent living. The decision to adapt institutions of higher education to the needs of the haredi sector addresses the needs of the haredi public, which is contending with increasing economic hardship and exhaustion of intra-haredi employment opportunities.
Employment – This chapter reviews the current state of employment in haredi society: employment rates, hourly wages and monthly income, part-time/fulltime employment and work hours, as well as a preliminary study of the different economic sectors and employment fields, with reference to intra-haredi gender and employment considerations.
Welfare – This chapter presents data concerning various perspectives on concepts such as poverty, standard of living and personal wellbeing in the haredi community. The data is culled from a variety of sources such as the National Insurance Institute, the Ministry of Social Affairs and Social Services, and surveys of the Central Bureau of Statistics, viewed in absolute and relative terms, as well as subjective and objective terms. These present a complex picture, the reality of which reflects theoretical and methodological challenges as the basis of forming comprehensive policy.
Income and Expenditure – The data presented in this chapter deal with haredi household income and expenditure. The data indicate the large gaps between haredi households and non-haredi Jewish households, in terms of income and expenditure and their composition. These gaps relate to other issues discussed in previous chapters in this publication, which discuss employment and poverty. Policymakers who will deal with these issues need better data, in particular those that reflect the diversity of sub-sectors within the haredi community.
Housing – This chapter surveys data regarding the housing culture of the haredi population, in terms of geographical distribution and mobility, leaseholds and housing density and future housing needs.
Culture and Leisure – This chapter surveys data on the haredi community’s cultural and leisure pursuits. Given the community’s religious, Torah orientation, haredi cultural consumption patterns require further study and analysis. The question of development and consumption of suitable cultural services such as theater, sport, music, dance and art constitutes a social area with policy implications at the government level as well as local authorities. The field of travel and leisure raises issues of adapting infrastructures such as beaches and national sites – issues which have already come up on the national agenda.