Vice Chair Nitsa (Kaliner) Kasir spoke about integrating Haredi workers in the Israeli manufacturing industry, enumerating the benefits and challenges inherent in employing Haredim. She opened her speech by presenting data on the shortage of workers in the Israeli manufacture industry, citing the low unemployment rate in Israel and the stigma attached to manufacture employees as the main reasons for this shortage.
Kasir went on to list factors that would motivate employers to hire Haredi workers: the expected growth of the sector, their life experience and strong work commitment resulting from their family-centeredness.
Kasir also presented data which negate myths surrounding Haredim in the workforce: the increased employment rate among Haredim in recent years shows that Haredim are interested in working (as opposed to the preconceived notion to the contrary); regarding work skills, the preconceived notion that Haredim have poor skills due to their not learning the core curriculum has been disproven – on math and reading literacy tests Haredim scored similarly to the rest of the Jewish population and significantly higher than the Arab population. In the area of cyber-troubleshooting, the Haredi score lags somewhat in relation to the rest of the Jewish population but is higher than the Arab population.
Kasir cited the benefits of employment in the manufacture industry for the Haredi population: a reliable source of income, a short training course that does not require academic studies enabling speedy integration in the workforce.
Kasir concluded with recommendations on how to increase the number of Haredim in the production industry: creating job training within specific factories and including areas of expertise; offering 80% – 90% worktime positions; and properly matching the expectations between employees and employers.
To download the presentation (Hebrew) click here.