On Saturday, February 22, 2020, MK Yair Lapid (Blue and White) visited a Reform synagogue and spoke with the leadership of the Reform Movement in Tel Aviv. Also, on Tuesday, February 25, 2020, MK Lapid met with the leadership of the Reform and Conservative community in Israel.
In his meeting with Reform community leadership, MK Lapid said:
“One of our main issues is religion and state. Today, Israel is the only state in the Western world where there is no religious freedom for Jews, and we will change this. The absolute control by the Orthodox stream must cease. Religious coercion must cease. There must be a civil marriage option alongside the rabbinate’s marriage option. All Reform and Conservative Judaism streams must be equal before the law. And all streams of Judaism must have free access to the Kotel (Western Wall). The state must recognize reform and conservative converts. Also at the budget level, we must have equality between the streams of Judaism, whether the state helps specific communities or not. If it helps specific communities then it needs to help everyone including the one that sits in front of me right now. So I want to remind you of one thing here, real change can only be achieved by ruling parties. I was a coalition member, we were a big party, and I learned the truth there. That on the big issues– and religion and state is a big issue– it is not enough to be a partner in government or part of the government. You have to be the ruling party”.
After the meeting with only the Reform community leaders, MK Lapid tweeted:
“Absolute control by the Orthodox stream needs to cease. Religious coercion must cease. Alongside the rabbinate, there must be a path of marital covenant – civil marriage. All streams of Judaism – reform, conservatives – should be equal before the law“.
After the later meeting with the community leaders, MK Lapid wrote:
“Yesterday I met with the leadership of the Reform and Conservative Movement in Israel and around the world. We are all committed to working together for the unity of the Jewish people and equality for all streams of Judaism“.