The hospital's marketing department prepared a series of ads in order to notify the public about the huge happening and about the opening of the special hospital for children. The ads were adapted to different target audiences in order to show consideration and respect for everyone" – except, one might point out, women who are routinely excluded and forcibly gender segregated.
Jerusalem Hospital Removes Photo Of Four-Year-Old Girl From Ad In Order Not To “Offend” Haredim
Shmarya Rosenberg • FailedMessiah.com
A huge event for the children of Jerusalem was held Friday at the Shaare Zedek Medical Center to celebrate the opening of the Wilf Children's Hospital.
But while the ads for the event directed non-haredim included pictures of boys and girls, the haredi-directed ads did not. Instead, Ynet reported the picture of a four-year-old girl in the ad was replaced with a non-female image in ads that were published the haredi media and sent to haredi homes.
A source in the haredi advertising industry told Ynet that because of the media and legal firestorms over the omission of pictures of women (and even of little girls) from ads targeting haredim, major advertising agencies have generally stopped producing different versions of ads for the general public and for the haredi community.
But that doesn’t mean they’re producing ads depicting women. They aren’t. Instead, they use abstract silhouettes or only use pictures of males.
Shaare Zedek responded to complaints about the ads this way:
"These days, we have begun populating the Wilf Children's Hospital at the Shaare Zedek Medical Center. The hospital's marketing department prepared a series of ads in order to notify the public about the huge happening and about the opening of the special hospital for children. The ads were adapted to different target audiences in order to show consideration and respect for everyone" – except, one might point out, women who are routinely excluded and forcibly gender-segregated – "but it eventually decided to use only one version. Unfortunately, the other version [i.e., the version with the four-year-old girl] appeared in two of the [non-haredi] publications,” the hospital told Ynet.
Haredi forced gender segregation in public spaces and haredi forced gender exclusion from public bus ads and the like have been strongly condemned by Israel’s highest court and are illegal.
Nonetheless, fearing haredi violence and boycotts while at the same time facing a government that often fails to enforce the law against haredi criminals, advertisers often opt to use ads that feature males exclusively or are gender neutral.
There is no accepted halakha (Orthodox Jewish law) which bans photos of four-year-old girls or modest photos of adult women. Nonetheless, haredi modesty rules have become increasingly draconian over the past few decades, going well beyond what Orthodox Jewish law actually mandates.