Etzion DCO: They want us to listen and help, but are not ready to wear a mask

Observers: 
Shlomit Steinitz, Natanya Ginsburg
Sep-7-2020
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Morning

 

10.30 - 11.35

 

During the hour or so that we spent at the DCO we counted about 20 people coming in, including to the offices of the Ministry of Industry. By the papers that some of them held regarding their lands, Shlomit said that it looked as if another confiscation had been added to the list.

 

Of these about five approached us, and again we faced the problem of our requesting they wear masks keep their distance – and our requests being ignored.  There two men were particularly difficult. The one asked us if we had a mask for him and when we said no he insisted on standing there and asking for help. Later when he went through to the offices, as had happened before, he suddenly… found one in his car.  I think that in future we should just refuse their requests for help unless, at least, they stand a way off. If we were men, would they show more respect? They just laugh and say that they are from Bethlehem and there is no corona there.  Not only that but afterwards he came up and complained that Sylvia does not answer so we pointed out that it was already after 11. He said very rudely, “What sort of work do you people do?” So we said it is not work – we’re volunteers.

 

When one has had a test for Corona it only appears on the computer about a week later. That is what N. told Shlomit. 

 

An episode yesterday at the Food Collection center where Daphne Banai goes, I believe.   We were told that there is one family from Hebron has worked at the Industrial Wholesale Centre in Givat Shaul for years already, and that some of them have not been home for two or more months. The young woman who showed us around said that they are paid much more …of course…. than they would be in Hebron.

 

One pleasant episode was a man who came up to us and said that Sylvia and her crew had helped him nine years ago and would we please thank them.

A few months ago his sister was ill. They have a hotel in Bethlehem. Since then she has been tested and is clean of the virus. But his wife has MS and has to be in Hadassa every six months. Last time when they had an appointment they did not go as they were scared of the Corona virus contagion. N., our helpful soldier, texted Shlomit that the man should make another appointment and come in at least 10 days before the actual appointment. But he was also tested for Corona. He wished to accompany her but it sounds as if they will wait till after the holidays as they are nervous about the Corona. Who can blame them?

One man had thrown stones 30 years ago and then afterwards worked for Rami Levi for four years. It is not clear why he left but he finds that he is now blacklisted. They too have to go to Hadassah. His wife has a permit but he has to accompany her. He is now running an ulpan, a language school – Alrad -…or starting to run it at Beit Sahur.

 

 

A taxi driver came up and asked on what days we come to the DCO and we told him every Monday. Not knowing when Chana and Ronit come, we said nothing. But in the case of someone being blacklisted we gave him Sylvia’s details on a MachsomWatch card and told him she would only reply on those days and that he had to have patience as there were many people phoning her.