Strictly-Orthodox Jewish men who refuse to sit next to female passengers on public transport should be required to “possibly pay a premium”, according to the Jewish Orthodox Feminist Alliance.

The organisation, which aims to expand the role of women within Orthodoxy, was reacting to news that easyJet staff were forced to call the police during a “nightmare” flight from Tel Aviv to Luton on Monday, when a group of male Charedi passengers antagonised stewards, triggered the exit light and refused to sit next to women.

A JOFA spokesperson said: “Perhaps it is time for airlines to set clear restrictions or protocols for individuals who choose such stringency. We would support the implementation of policies that would require passengers to make arrangements in advance and possibly pay a premium because of the added cost, most probably in staff time, to accommodate their wants.”

She added: “When passengers fail to abide by airline or government rules, they should not be allowed to delay an entire flight of people. To be clear, we find no reason in terms of Jewish law or Jewish values, for separate seating on planes, buses or any other setting. It is beyond the pale of mainstream Orthodoxy, but we have no issue if people want to pay a premium in advance to accommodate a stringency beyond the letter of the law.”

Read the full story: Police called after Charedi men cause chaos on ‘worst ever Israel easyJet flight’