Ultra-Orthodox Community Issues Anti-organ Donor Cards

Sources in ultra-Orthodox community: Organ donation cards are a method of stealing organs from helpless people.

The ultra-Orthodox community has come up with a response to the growing popularity of Israel's organ donor, or Adi cards. The community has issued a new card called a "life card" which expressed its holders' wish not to donate organs.

The new card says "I do not give my permission to take from me, not in life nor in death, and organ or part of my body for any purpose."

The initiative came after the organ donor law, intended to regulate organ donations in compliance with Jewish law in cases of brain and respiratory death, was approved by the Knesset in March.

Shmuel Peppenheim, a spokesman for the ultra-Orthodox community in Israel, said "we are promoting this card these days. We want to expand into the general public, and we know that all of Israel is loyal to the Torah and everyone wants to live and die as a Jew should live and die."

Sources within the ultra-Orthodox community told Army Radio on Wednesday that organ donation cards were actually a "method to steal organs from helpless people." The community is urging everyone to sign a "life card" and in the event of brain death, not to donate anything but simply pray for a miracle.

MK Avraham Ravitz (United Torah Judaism) told Israel Radio on Wednesday that even the Adi organ donor card contains a clause that says that family members can consult with a rabbi of their choice. "There is a real debate regarding the exact time of death... There are instances when the heart is still beating but there is no rain. It isn't always unequivocal."