Advertisements featuring women are beginning to appear on billboards in parts of Jerusalem, where the absence of female images had prompted a public outcry earlier this year.
In the last few days, the television show "Hatzuya" has put up ads that include women, though they appear to be limited to non-Haredi neighborhoods. And the National Transplant Center, also known as Adi, will be relaunching its ad campaign in Jerusalem today - women included.
The transplant center was one of many companies and institutions that rendered women invisible on Jerusalem billboards, buses and bus stops, out of fear that ultra-Orthodox extremists would vandalize advertisements that offend their sensibilities.
"We're very happy that the advertising campaign is being relaunched and welcome Adi's decision," said Rabbi Uri Ayalon, one of the leaders of the protest against eliminating female images. "It shows that public awareness can have results, and so we need to continue the struggle."
Ayalon was involved in recent demonstrations against the trend, as part of which some protesters threatened to cancel their organ donor cards. Now that the transplant center has restored women to its ads, Ayalon called on the public to once again sign up for Adi's donor card.
The transplant center says the ad campaign was not changed because of public pressure.
"We put out the same poster for all of Israel, publicizing the new law giving priority in receiving transplants to those who hold Adi cards," said Adi spokeswoman Dvora Sherer. "But the advertising company took down the pictures of women, for fear that citizens would damage the posters."
Sherer said the center demanded the original ads be restored.
Though the ads featuring women will appear on bus stops and billboards, they will not go on the sides of buses, at least for now - both because the buses go through ultra-Orthodox neighborhoods and out of fear of the high costs of damage to the buses if they are vandalized.
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