According to the National Statistics Bureau, the average gross household income in Israel is ₪ 19,118 among the general population, yet among households of Ethiopian descent, it is a worrying ₪ 12,294. Alongside this data, the national average providers per household is 1.5 among the general population, yet among households of Ethiopian descent, this number is 2.0. The significance of these statistics is that the average income is lower, despite two providers being integrated in the workforce, due to integration in professions with low salaries. By examining these statistics, alongside the National Insurance Institute of Israel’s Poverty Report, and OECD studies, we are witnessing a situation in which in Israel – even in a case in which there are two providers in a household – families are still living underneath the poverty line, and this can be observed at high rates among Israeli families of Ethiopian descent. As a result, in 2007, the Association of Ethiopian Jews led to the enactment of the adequate representation law, and in 2011 expanded the law in order to include adequate representation in corporations, governmental companies, and local authorities. In addition, the AEJ is fighting the deep socio-economic inequalities in the following ways:
- Universal struggles, including the fight against in the high living costs, and the increase of the minimum wage, which is why the AEJ is a member of the Forum for the Fight Against Poverty.
- Struggle for high-quality professional training schemes, and a closing of the gaps inherent in the education system starting from elementary schools, in order to ensure the integration of Israelis of Ethiopian descent in academia, and thus break the cycle of poverty.