Discrimination & Exclusion of Minority Groups in Israeli Media

Policy Paper Based on Zulat's Advanced Training on Equality and Human Rights for Media Professionals Coordinated by Dr. Revital Amiran

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Being the fourth branch of government, the media plays an important role in monitoring the authorities and protecting individual rights, and at its best is supposed to serve as the watchdog of democracy. The media also plays a key role in promoting liberal values and democratic codes, which is why we consider it a partner and seek to strengthen it and make it as free and detached from foreign interests as possible. 

To this end, we initiated the advanced training project for editors and news desk reporters, especially those in charge of phrasing headlines and “push notifications” in news sites. The seminars addressed the various ways in which the rights of members of various groups in Israeli society are violated, discussed freedom of the press in the populist era, the fake news phenomenon, and online incitement, and assessed the state of Israeli democracy. 

Regarding the exclusion of minority groups, it was imported for us to illustrate to the participants the ways in which media coverage might increase hostility, reinforce stereotypes, and encourage incitement, and enhanced their knowledge and familiarity with the subject matter and with the factual basis they need in order to formulate egalitarian and tolerant attitudes. In addition, the seminars gave media people with like-minded values an opportunity to meet, discuss their work challenges, and strengthen their sense of professional mission.

Hence, this paper deals with the numerical and substantive underrepresentation of minority groups and marginalized populations. It is based on the lectures presented in the seminars, as well as on the opinions of the media people who took part in them.






Dr. Maha Sabbah Karkabi


Senior Lecturer in the Department of Sociology and Anthropology, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev. She holds a Ph.D. in Sociology from Tel Aviv University (2015), a postdoctoral fellowship at the Center for Gender Studies, SOAS, University of London (2015-2016), a postdoctoral fellowship in the Department of Sociology at Tel Aviv University (2016-2017), and a postdoctoral fellowship Ph.D. at the Humphrey Institute for Social Research, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev (2018-2020).
Dr. Maha Karbahi’s areas of interest focus on the connection between social change, family behavior, and gender inequality in societies in the process of change and specifically in Palestinian Arab society in Israel. Her research draws attention to the study of family life and employment, using a combined “ethnic lens” and “gender lens” and paying attention to the perspective of Palestinian Arab women, a group characterized by intersections between multiple marginal locations, which over the years has remained hidden from the research eye. Dr. Karkabi-Sabah’s research is published in professional journals and chapters in scientific books that are considered pioneers in family research, work, and gender equality.


Prof. Frances Raday

Professor Emeritus in the Lieberman Chair in Labor Law, in the Faculty of Law at the Hebrew University and serves as a full professor in the College of Management’s academic track, where she also serves as chair of the graduate program and as honorary president of the Concord Center for International Law Absorption. Radai was a member of a working group of the UN Human Rights Council on discrimination against women. In addition, she is a prominent and feminist human rights activist.


Dr. Rawia Aburabia 

Faculty member of Sapir Academic College’s School of Law, received her PhD from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Her research deals with the interface between law, gender, minorities, and human rights. Has published in leading journals on the subject of the matrimonial laws pertaining to Muslim women in Israel. Her book Under the Law, Outside Justice: Polygamy, Gendered Citizenship, and Colonialism in Israeli Law is expected to be published as part of the Gender Series of Kibbutz Meuhad Publishing House.

Dr. Aburabia has extensive experience in international human rights and public law. She has worked as a jurist for the Association for Civil Right and has been invited as a specialist to address such international forums as the United Nations and the European Parliament on the subject of indigenous communities and minority rights. She has interned with Human Rights Watch in Washington DC, and has been a member of the executive board of Amnesty International. In 2018, she was selected by the magazine Globes as one of the 40 most promising young persons in Israel under the age of 40.



Ron Kessler

With over two decades of experience in the field of digital content, Ron has participated in numerous political and social campaigns. He helped run the digital activity of senior public officials, and worked in various NGOs. Ron is a fundamentally optimistic man, who believes that Israel can be changed and so can people. Lives in Tel Aviv.