Overwhelming majority of Israeli hi-tech employees oppose protesting judicial reform

“Most hi-tech employees do not participate in protests and don’t believe their organizations should take part in them,” said Tefen CEO Mally Bitzur-Parnes.


Only 12% of respondents say they have participated or plan to participate in the protests against the Israeli government’s judicial reform plan, according to a survey released Sunday.

The poll, published by Tefen, an international management consulting firm, found that the vast majority (90%) of respondents were against their company taking an active role in the protests.

Seventy-seven percent said they would not personally take part in the protests.

“Contrary to what is being portrayed on the social networks, most hi-tech employees do not participate in protests and don’t believe their organizations should take part in them,” Tefen CEO Mally Bitzur-Parnes told Israel Hayom.

“They favor communications and negotiations and oppose extremism, calls for civil disobedience and refusal to serve in the IDF reserves. Most of them object to violence and to taking money out of the country, or any steps that harm Israel’s image,” she added.

“The absolute majority of hi-tech employees in Israel want quiet, and to put the split behind us,” she said.

Those polled also were asked to rate freedom of political expression at their workplaces. Twenty-one percent said they don’t feel free to express their opinions, 22% percent said they felt they could. Fifty-seven percent said political views should not be exchanged at work.

The poll surveyed 2,170 hi-tech employees, who were evenly split with regard to judicial reform. Asked whether the reform endangers Israel’s economy, 41% said no and 39% said yes.

On Saturday night, Israelis again took to the streets to protest the judicial reforms, with large turnouts reported in Haifa, Beersheva and Tel Aviv.

Opposition leader Yair Lapid told an estimated 10,000-strong crowd in Beersheva that “Israel is in the greatest crisis in its history.”

The Yesh Atid party chairman continued: “A terrible wave of terrorism is hitting us, the economy is collapsing, money is fleeing the country. Here in the south, personal security is collapsing every day. Yesterday the Iranians signed an agreement with Saudi Arabia that will inject billions of dollars into their nuclear program.

“These are huge, historic challenges, but the government has lost interest. The only thing the government is interested in is continuing to crush Israeli democracy and the unity of the Israeli people.”

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Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Sunday accused the opposition of trying to overthrow his government and vowed to continue pressing ahead with its reform program.

“Only four months ago we held elections. The government I head received a clear mandate from the citizens of Israel. The fact that for two whole months our repeated calls for dialogue received no response from the opposition proves that what interests the opposition is not the judicial reforms, but the creation of anarchy and the overthrow of the elected government,” said Netanyahu.

“It is impossible to be in favor of the success of the Israeli economy and to encourage the flight of funds from Israel. It is impossible to be in favor of the rule of law and to encourage violations of the law. It is impossible to be in favor of the security of the state and to encourage insubordination that would collapse the security of the state. There is no conditional Zionism,” said the premier.

Nevertheless, Netanyahu expressed hope that “honest” and “patriotic” members of the opposition, “those who care about the country,” will step up and engage in talks.

“But in any case,” he continued, “let no one make a mistake: We received a mandate from the public, and we will fulfill it.”

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