Protests Gather Against Husband Who Refuses to Grant Jewish Divorce

Group Hopes To Shame Man Into Doing Right Thing

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By Yermi Brenner

Published July 18, 2013.
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More than two-dozen people protested last week in Norwalk, Connecticut against a Jewish husband, who refused to grant his wife a divorce, the Jewish Ledger reports. The demonstration, organized by the non-profit Organization for the Resolution of Agunot (ORA), took place outside the hospital where the husband, Ephraim Ohana, works.

Ohana is refusing to grant a get — a Jewish divorce — to ex-wife Cynthia, though the couple has been legally divorced since 2005.

Rabbi Jeremy Stern, ORA executive director, told the Jewish Ledger that the refusal to issue a get is considered a form of domestic abuse, and that the goal of the protest was to inform hospital employees and Ohana’s colleagues about the situation in an attempt to shame him and cause him to change his mind.

“We want to raise awareness in the local community and increase the pressure by Ephraim Ohana’s colleagues so that he can’t hide,” Stern told the Jewish Ledger. “We hope the Jewish community will state that he’s persona non grata in its shuls. We’re hoping that he’ll get tired of this and will want to improve himself and give the get.”

According to Stern, Ohana has lived in Norwalk for several months and was attending a local synagogue until his identity was discovered, when he was asked to leave.


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