Knesset employees must all now adhere to the national Covid-19 Green Pass rules in Israel. This means that they must have either been vaccinated in the last six months or have passed a Covid-19 test in order to work in the Knesset.
The rules came into effect after the Knesset Finance Committee today, Sunday, approved the new rules for the civil service workers. This applies the rules set by the Civil Service to Knesset workers, enabling the competent authorities in the Knesset to ask these employees to either present a Green Pass or confirmation of negative coronavirus test results when coming to work.
Similar guidelines will be issued for other people coming to the Knesset. Knesset members, however, will be exempt from these rules.
Knesset and Finance Committee Legal Advisor Adv. Sagit Afik said, “Since the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic, the Knesset as an institution has operated painstakingly in light of the coronavirus regulations passed by the Knesset. Accordingly, various restrictions were applied to the Knesset, regarding the Green Pass, Purple Pass, number of people present in committee rooms and so forth. The procedures for the Knesset were set by the Speaker and the Director General, and until today were applied by means of letters or guidelines from the Knesset Director General.”
“There are a number of technical changes for the purpose of adapting the rules to the work of the Knesset; the goal of the rules is preventing infection in the workplace, and reducing the health risk along with ensuring the provision of essential services,” he added.
The Kneset Director of Human Resources is now authorized to request that workers present a Green Pass or negative test results if she finds that this is necessary for the proper functioning of the Knesset. The Speaker and Director General of the Knesset will issue similar guidelines for other people coming to the Knesset—parliamentary assistants, outsourcing workers and others.
Director General of the Knesset Gil Segal stated, “I would like to emphasize a few points: First, we are falling in line with the Civil Service as a whole. The second point is that the Knesset Speaker and I will apply this to other people coming to the Knesset. The third point is that there is an exception for Members of Knesset; they will not be required to present a Green Pass, and each of them will act as they see fit. We will check the Green Pass at the entrance to the Knesset and this way we are working to lower infection among all those entering the Knesset building.”
Chair of the Knesset Workers’ Union Hodaya Kain said that her organization understands the need for this new rule, as it is intended to safeguard the health of the workers and all the people coming to the Knesset. “Along with that, equal application [of the rules] is important to us. At times, there were children who walked around in the Knesset building, who were not children of Knesset workers, so equal application [of the rules] is important to us,” she said.