N.Y. Hasidic village agrees to stop gender segregation in public park

(JTA) — Kiryas Joel in upstate New York agreed to halt gender segregation at a public park in the Hasidic village.

The decision announced Monday by Kiryas Joel, which is populated by Satmar Hasidim, settles a lawsuit filed in December by civil liberties groups, according to the Courthouse News Service. The agreement was reached on March 25.

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The Kinder Park was opened in April 2012. The 283-acre park includes blue-painted playground equipment and pink-painted playground equipment located in separate areas. The park’s rules, including gender separation, were listed in Hebrew on signs.

The park was  built using “special financing” obtained by the village’s mayor, the Gothamist reported.

Under the agreement, civil liberties monitors will visit the park twice a year for the next three years to ensure there is no gender segregation there.

“Public parks cannot segregate on the basis of sex any more than they can for race or national origin,” New York Civil Liberties Union Executive Director Donna Lieberman said in a statement. “This agreement ensures that all park visitors have equal access to the entire park.”

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