“It is impossible to deny ORA’s success in advocating for vulnerable women and changing the conversation about divorce in the Orthodox community.”
ORA: Organization for the Resolution of Agunot
Guides Published In
National, Women and Girls
Freeing chained wives and fundamentally changing attitudes about get-refusal and domestic abuse.
Why It's In Slingshot
Under traditional Jewish law, a husband can deny his wife a divorce by refusing to give a “get,” a religious bill of divorce, which forces many women to remain in unhealthy or abusive marriages. ORA: Organization for the Resolution of Agunot fights for these women and offers support, education, and resources. Agunot, a Hebrew term used to describe these “chained” women, cannot begin new relationships until they receive the get, and husbands often deny the get in order to blackmail their wives. ORA works to change the way that the Jewish community views agunot, creating large-scale awareness about this dangerous form of domestic abuse. Since its founding in 2002, ORA has successfully freed over 200 women through amicable facilitation and advocacy. When these efforts do not succeed, ORA organizes community protests and applies social, financial, and communal pressure on husbands who refuse to give their wives a get. In the past year, ORA has received acclaim from several national newspapers for its work in resolving a five- year agunah case, and its social media efforts have garnered support from over 13,000 people for another woman. ORA’s Agunah Prevention Initiative also educates religious communities to create awareness about agunot and preventative Jewish prenuptial agreements. Rabbis from both Modern Orthodox rabbinic associations endorse signing this halachic prenuptial agreement. Through ORA’s work to resolve current get-refusal cases and prevent future issues, the organization strives to eliminate abuse within the divorce process.
Ways To Get Involved
1. Promote the Jewish prenuptial agreement by signing one and encouraging your friends to do so as well
2. Organize a “”postnup”” party in your community where couples who married without the prenup can sign a postnup instead
3. Attend an ORA rally to stand up on behalf of an agunah fighting for her freedom
4. Offer pro bono services, especially legal aid, to agunot with limited financial resources