The Society of St. Yves – Catholic Center for Human Rights filed a class action against the Israeli Municipality of Interior (MOI) demanding it to return the sums of money illegally collected through discriminatory parking fines in East Jerusalem.
The Jerusalem municipality does not provide the right means of payment for parking spots in the city center of East Jerusalem. Four years ago, the municipality has also stopped distributing the parking pre-paid cards in different commercial stores in the streets of the east city center of Jerusalem. This leaves Palestinian Jerusalemites with no practical means of payment other than “smart payment tools”; such as the “easy park” device which is not frequently used in East Jerusalem as it is expensive and not many charging points are available; or the “Pango” or “Cellopark” which are applications that require smartphones. These tools make it a condition for Palestinian Jerusalemites to own a smart phone and a bank account in an Israeli bank which is also an obstacle since most of East Jerusalemites own a Palestinian bank account.
Thus, Jerusalemites that do not have access to these payment methods are left with no choice but to park their cars and receive a fine for not paying the parking spot, whereas in West Jerusalem, many more payment methods are available for the public.
It is noteworthy that the MOI has collected almost 2 million Nis from parking fines in 2014 and 2015.