Orthodox Female EMT Group Approved In New York State


rachel-freierEzras Nashim, an all-female volunteer ambulance service for New York’s Orthodox community, says it seeks to safeguard the modesty of women in labor from what was formerly a field dominated by men.

Ezras Nashim, a women-only crew of Orthodox emergency medical technicians, has received New York State approval to begin work as an emergency medical service. They will be going head-to-head against Hatzalah, a long-established and highly regarded volunteer ambulance company working primarily in communities with large Orthodox populations. Hatzalah has only male volunteers and refused a request by Ezras Nashim’s founders to start a division of female volunteers able to respond to calls when a woman is in labor.

The state health department licensed Ezras Nashim, whose name means “Women’s Help,” on February 15.

When they were rejected by Hatzalah in 2011, “I said we weren’t going to litigate, weren’t going to file a claim with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. That was never an option. I said we would have to find a way to make it happen and at the same time give women a voice, give women an option,” said Rachel Freier, an attorney and Ezras Nashim’s founder.

“The state approval is big. We had to prove to the state that we’re capable of doing this and that there’s a need for it. Now we have to step up our training and fundraise to buy medical equipment,” said Freier. Two hospitals have agreed to provide advanced training in neo-natal and general emergency care to Ezras Nashim EMTs, she said.

Forty women signed up to volunteer have already trained as EMTs, another dozen currently are taking the EMT course and a few other women will serve as dispatchers, said Freier, who has six children and lives in Borough Park. She took the EMT course with her mother, and qualified last June. She claims that modesty, not a feminist desire for equality, motivated her to start Ezras Nashim.

Read more here.

{Matzav.com Newscenter}


  1. A big yasher koach. This is wonderful and Hashem bless these women for volnteering to do such a kiddush! Hatzlacha raba to them!

  2. if its a modesty issue not femminism, than i would assume they would let Rabbonim decide what tznius dictates. Are there Rabbonim who back them?

  3. Let’s see who will waste their money on this.
    Let’s see who will call them when their life and their childs life is on the line.

    She will receive support from bluth greenberg and avi weiss.

    Their rabbinical board is headed by rabbit sara hurwitz.

  4. Why give these people any credence by putting this up on your website?
    A bunch of feminists. That’s what they called themselves – Ezras Feminists.

  5. So wonderful! Chasdei Hashem there are women who understand how and where tzniyus can be implemented at a time when it is needed for the comfort of all involved. Brochos and much hatzlocho to these remarkable women!

  6. Why all these articles about starying this group? There are two volunteer ambulances chasing hatzala no articles just actualluy emts pn the street. But this feminist is trying to bring down klal yisroel. Wonder what her einiklach will look like look at the maskillim

  7. Oh! Like the second-class female doctors in the Soviet Union?
    Still, I am curious. Please explain. I thought that when a lady feels she is going to give birth, she promptly goes to the hospital and that’s where babies are born, with the assistance of a (likely male) OB-GYN. Is this a service which aims to deliver babies in ambulances?

  8. It was written on another web site on 02/18/13 about this service that “Medical transports will be done by a private company with the fire department serving as backup.”

    Does this mean that the patient or the patient’s insurance would have to pay for the transport?

    Or will Ezras Nashim have its own ambulances?

  9. This is a classic case of a misguidedpeople with a low self esteem who is not machshiv their role in serving HKB”H. They are influenced by the Goyim/Hollywood.

  10. Hatztalah is around for decades in much frummer places than Flatbush. Do you really think the concern of tznius never came up before? The Stiepler opposed it vehemently for reasons beyond the scope of this post and the minds of you simple minded believers.

  11. while tsnius is an issue isnt safety a bigger issue? i think men hav e quicker response times…the people calling emergency service for babies isnt for reguar labor but for an emergency mayb they should be called in addditon to hatzala

  12. without the support of our local rabanim, its a shame that “matzav” posted this news. again this proves that matzav is not lesham shomiyem !!!

  13. With stupid comments like #4 I now see there needs most women feel better when being treated by a REAL Doctor or in this case one of there own. This was a turf war nothing else

  14. I see Matzav is involved in a major cover up over here! Now deal with it! You tried to be cute by printing this garbage, now you won’t let the real truth come out! Stop sanitizing my comments, you baby’s! It just shows again how immature and not ready for prime time, you little BABIES are!

  15. Despicable comment. Rush Limbaugh never should have said it, and Jews in particular never should have enjoyed it. It was said about militant feminists. How can you even compare these woman to that? Shameful!

  16. i wont take sides but to “double standard” dont be stupid,comparing posing in a picture to tznius concerns of childbirth,and for everyone who has an ax to grind,chill out, these are kosher women who never grew up with feminism and arent trying to replicate it and are attemting to good,and although i dont know if its endorsed,i certainly dont think any rav would say its a problem,not anymore than a women working as a doctor in a hospital

  17. Have you not seen and heard the the appeals on Shabbos Hatzolah every year? Every Rav backs Hatzolah. It’s very telling that support is yet to come for Ezras Nashim.

  18. “while tsnius is an issue isnt safety a bigger issue?”

    Of course it is! My wife is a physician and she does things every day that would be considered completely non-tzniut in any other context. You do not want either a physician or an EMT who is thinking about tzniut when your life is in danger!


    AS The Torah teaches us ???????? ?????? ?????? Holy You Should Be!

    By us wearing immodest clothing we distance the Shechina (Divine Presence)from us Chas Vesholom.

    And the Torah also states:??? ???? ?? ???? ??? ??? ?????? Immodesty should not be seen among you! Or Hashem will c”v withdraw his presence from you!

    “”If we cause the Shechina to departs, we are stripped of our protection ?”?””

    Maybe this is why we see so many Tzoros, illness, kids at risk, problems with Sholom Bayis, crushing poverty and unbearable tragedies, that have befallen us lately.

    We find in the words of the Chofetz Chaim tz”l in a famous letter: “A huge fire has broken out in many places through the despicable styles which the power of uncleanliness has unleashed”………. THIS IS WHY BLESSINGS AND PROSPERITY HAVE LEFT US……. To a large degree this despicable style negates the statement of the Torah: “Your camp should be holy and there should not be found therein Erveh”

    …Tight-fitting, short, flashy clothing, low cut necklines, long or extravagant Sheitels, flashy jewelry, stylish hats, perfume etc. are contrary to Tznius standards. Besides being the cause of other people’s sins…

    My Dear Sisters!
    Please Let us wear clothes that are befitting for Jewish Daughters. This will cause the Shechina to reside in our midst. This will bring many blessings upon ourselves, and ultimately bring the Geulah Sheleima ??”?

    ????? ???? ??????? ?????? ?????! The key to our salvation is in your hands!

    Lets take advantage Now, and still bring the Geula this Chodesh Nissen, remember it’s up to us Yiddishe women who dress Tznius to bring Moshiach

  20. everyone stop hating already!!!!!!!!! If you personally don’t agree then don’t call them. And don’t start the haskamas-rabonim game ,because as many rabonim that are against it,there are that endorse it. And besides I think everybody, before blindly commenting,should ask there wives what they think, not because they are our poskim, just rather so you think rationally.

  21. Lets see all those applauding this group in the name of Tznius start dressing in the name of Tznius! You can’t pick and choose when Tznius matters and when it doesn’t.

  22. #30 who will call them? Don’t know — not anyone in my family. If they were secular feminists who want to deliver babies, they would have completed medical school long ago and they would now be assisting childbirth in hospital as OB-GYNs. We go to the best doctor available, if the best one is a chiloni (male or female) or a nonjew, so be it. If we are not in such a situation, but rather these ladies are seeking to make a statement with someone else’s health, good luck and don’t ask me for a dime, much less ask us to risk calling them.

  23. #30 Thank you for your response. Talk about blindly commenting, Don’t shoot yourself in the foot by saying “not anyone in my family”, because when push comes to shove (pun intended) you may.

  24. #3,

    you make three unfounded claims.

    1) That the disgust and opposition to this group is based upon silly hate.

    2)That Rabbonim endorse it.

    3)That women (our wives) would prefer to use them.

    Well, here are the facts.

    3) My wife said she would never entrust her life, or that of our child, with these rabble rousers.

    She has used a female OB. When she had a high-risk pregnancy, she used a male doctor, who was best-suited for that pregnancy. She will make use of the best medical care she can get, regardless of gender.

    She does not trust these rabble rousers.

    2) Please name the rabbonim in support of this endeavor.
    I highly doubt there are three, or even one, notable rav who supports this.

    1) After clarifing the above, so who is it who is simply “hating”. Sounds like your baseless accusations are stupid hate. Please, stop hating already!!!!!!!!!

    Good luck, Ruchie

  25. I have nothing against it Hashkaficly, but I don’t really get the point. My brother is an EMT and he says it’s pretty rare for EMT’s to deliver babies. It’s expensive to run a volunteer ambulance company. To create an organization for the rare occasion that it’s needed doesn’t make much sense to me. Yes it would be humiliating to have your husband Chavrusa, or male neighbor deliver your baby, but to create an organization just to avert the rate occurrence, doesn’t make sense. I imagine in most cases where the baby comes too fast, you don’t end up having much of a choice who delivers the baby, and it’s never your ideal choice.

  26. #39,

    Do you always stand up when the Torah passes past you?

    Do you even stand up when the Torah is placed on the Bimah?

    When else do you stand up?


    Please, don’t use to Torah as excuse to C”V desecrate the Torah. These women are desecrating the Torah.

    As Chazal teach us: The tipshim (stupid people) stand up (literally) in honor of the Torah, but do not stand up in honor of its Learners.
    Learners = Rabbonim.
    The Rabbonim oppose this move.

    That chazal term as tipshim and worse. A lot worse.