Rabbinates to Launch Database of Husbands Refusing to Grant Divorces
JNS.org – Israeli and European rabbinates are collaborating to set up a database listing the names and photos of images of Jewish husbands who have refused to grant their wives a divorce or who have gone missing amid their refusal. The database plan was discussed during the past week at a conference for European rabbinical judges in Brussels.
The database will help combat the phenomenon of Jewish husbands refusing to grant their wives a Jewish divorce, or “get,” which they must do in order for the wives to be free to marry again. In some cases, such husbands move away to other communities. The database will allow such communities to sanction the husbands, reported Yedioth Ahronoth.
The head of the Israeli Rabbinical Courts Administration’s Agunot (a term loosely meaning “chained women” in Hebrew) Department, Rabbi Eliyahu Maimo, who spoke at the conference, described earlier this month how in one recent case the rabbinate was forced to hire several private detectives to locate a divorce-refusing husband.
“We followed him as he rode his electric bicycle home. There he was placed under arrest, sat in jail for 24 hours—and this morning he gave the get,” Maimo told Israel National News.
“We arrest some 30-50 men each year for this purpose, and 95 percent of them give a get within a day of being arrested. In this case, the man gained nothing over these ten years, other than having to live underground for all that time. We would like to make it clear to everyone: A man who refuses to give a get, there is no point in hiding,” he said.