OU Israel Job Fair Allegedly Charged Unemployed Job Seekers An Entry Fee
Shmarya Rosenberg • FailedMessiah.com
The Orthodox Union (OU) held a job fair in Jerusalem in May, and it allegedly made each job seeker pay a 50 shekel (just over $13 dollars) admission fee, a source familiar with the issue told FailedMessiah.com.
Like the controversial Brooklyn job fair the OU held last week in partnership with New York State Assemblyman Dov Hikind, people who registered online in advance were not charged an admission fee. Those who did not, were charged.
Both Hikind and the OU claim that anyone who told them at the door that they could not afford to pay were allowed to enter for free. But no such arrangement seems to have been in place in Jerusalem.
The currently available webpage for the Jerusalem job fair notes in bold type "Register online in advance. Do not expect just to show up and be admitted." But the webpage does not say when online advance registration would close, and an OU Jobs email shown to FailedMessiah.com says "Free of charge with pre-registration and 50 shekels at the door."
FailedMessiah.com was told that advance registration for the Jerusalem job fair was closed without notice several days before the event, and people who complained at the event that the advance registration had closed too soon were still forced to pay the 50 shekel admission fee – which is a large amount of money for the average Israeli, especially for an unemployed Israeli, to pay.
The Jerusalem job fair's website says that job seekers would be provided with a list of available jobs in advance of the job fair.
"You will also receive a list of open jobs that are being presented. This list will be published prior to the event as well on http://www.oujobs.org Please note the jobs posted are the only jobs being offered," the website says.
However, the OU’s promotional online material allegedly said that social service organizations needing to fill job openings would be at the job fair. But allegedly, none were.
A job seeker told FailedMessiah.com that he entered the job fair after paying his entry fee, quickly walked through it and realized within three minutes of entering that there were no social services organizations there and that no no social services jobs were being offered.
The man claims he immediately went to the OU’s director of the job fair, told the director that there were no social services organizations or related jobs at the job fair despite the OU’s promotional material, and politely asked the director for a refund of his admission fee.
The OU’s job fair director allegedly smirked at the man, looked at him with contempt and yelled “no!” despite the fact that the job seeker had been inside the job fair for less than five minutes.
“[He] snorted in my face with rude and utterly condescending disgust at my gall to even ask such a question. He then yelled "no" directly into my face and waved me off like I was an annoying small child, or worse a recurring pest,” the man told FailedeMessiah.com.
The OU allegedly earns hundreds of millions of dollars each year on its kosher supervision business, which is the largest in the world.
But the OU’s financial information is not publicly available, and many observers who have followed the OU closely question where the money the OU earns actually goes.
The OU's Israel website refers all questions on its annual job fair to an email address that is also used by OU Jobs in New York City. An emailed request for comment sent to that email address has not yet been responded to, likely because the OU's New York office is closed at this time.