Beduin women join the Kadima camp
beduin woman and child
(photo credit: Orly Halpern)
'Kadima was the first political party to approach Beduin women.'
A group of Beduin women from the Negev held a women-only, get-to-know-Kadima campaign event Monday in Rahat. Some 150 women from the government-built Beduin villages in the south came, said Fatimah Abu Gaylon, one of the organizers and a newly recruited Kadima activist. Abu Gaylon, a former Labor Party voter, told The Jerusalem Post she joined the Kadima campaign after being approached by MK Ghaleb Majadle. "Kadima was the first political party to approach Beduin women" this election, she said, adding that women at the event talked about their needs, their hopes and their problems. Nadia Hilu, an Arab politician who is No. 15 on the Labor Party list, said the Labor Party had been working with Beduin women for many years. "Kadima just entered the arena now, but I have been working with Beduin women for a very long time through conferences, workshops personal meetings and initiating business entrepreneurship," said Hilu, who is also vice president of the women's organization Na'amat. Hilu said that the Labor Party platform for free education from infancy until university age "is especially to the advantage of Arab women, since it will allow them to go out to work." It "doesn't matter that Kadima is a right-wing party. We have Arab parties, but they put us backward. What did they do for us? They ignore us; the Beduin women, the Beduin men, the Arab sector. We just hear them in the media," Abu Gaylon said. "I think Kadima can help us. Why not? Through all the years, we tried all the other parties and nothing helped. We just go backwards."