Bad Hebrew Costs Thousands of Immigrants Their Jobs as Armed Guards

New Hebrew test causes thousands to lose gun licenses, creates black market.

Thousands of immigrants have lost their jobs as security guards after failing Hebrew tests now required in order to receive gun licenses. The Knesset Committee for Immigration, Absorption and Diaspora Affairs will meet today to discuss the matter.

Committee chairwoman Lia Shemtov (Yisrael Beiteinu) decided to convene the committee after Haaretz revealed that the new regulations have led many immigrants to lose their gun licenses or be refused permits.

A joint committee from the interior and public security ministries decided to require immigrant security guards to pass a test in Hebrew reading and writing as part of the gun licensing procedure.

In addition, immigrants who have been in Israel for more than 10 years must pay for the licensing course and exam out of their own pockets, and are not compensated by the state or their employers.

Many older immigrants cannot meet the new requirements even though they have decent spoken Hebrew.

This has created a black market for gun licenses, leading to suspicions that many new licenses have been granted in return for bribes.