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Jul 27, 2014

temporary mikva solution in RBS C

A few weeks ago I wrote about the situation in RBS C in  which local residents were complaining about the city, led by Haredi authorities, not providing a mikva for the neighborhood in a timely fashion. The only thing the Irya could say is 3 years. No provision for a temporary solution, no looking for a quicker solution.

Currently the residents need to use mikvaot in other neighborhoods. That is ok, albeit inconvenient, for weekdays, but Shabbos is a problem. It is a long walk from RBS C to the closest mikva in RBS A. Also, much of the road is dark, and dangerous.

A couple of residents contacted me after that post. We bounced ideas back and forth, along with some griping about the lack of a solution.

Since then I have come up with a quick,, temporary, solution, that shouldn't be expensive or difficult to implement. It would obviously have to be coordinated with a rav who can deal with the halachot of mikva construction, as well as a kablan, engineer, and an askan who can get it done, as well as, I imagine, representatives of the Iryah who will approve it, even just temporarily, and allocate a small piece of land for it.

This would just be a temporary solution, until a better mikva could be built. It would only be for use on Friday nights, holiday nights, and in cases of "emergency". I do think that this type of a mikva is better than putting oneself in danger, walking in a dangerous area in the dark, and better than pushing off "mikva night" due to lack of a solution.

Here is my idea, which I sent to the residents I had been in contact with, and it is based on the Shulchan Aruch, hilchot Mikvaot, which I am currently learning:
It seems like it should not be too hard or expensive or lengthy to build a small and simple mikva,. You can build a small structure with 1 "bor", or 2 if necessary. This could be done quickly, and take a couple of weeks to a month. 
That bor could be filled with blocks of ice that would melt in the bor. This could be done by purchasing ice blocks, or by residents filling their freezers with containers making ice, and quickly dumping them in the bor. Once the mikva has 40 saa (or a bit more, to be safe), regular water could be added.

Perhaps such a mikva should only be used for Friday nights because it is dangerous to walk to rbs a, and during weeknights people should drive or take taxis to a better mikva. But on Friday nights, it seems to me that a simple mikva is better than the danger and better than pushing off mikva night.

Either this can be done through the Iryah and rabbonim, or your community can do it on its own, with the community funding it (and some fundraising perhaps). I think it would take 4-6 weeks, once it gets started, and would be usable far quicker than waiting for 3 years for the Iryah to build a proper mikva.

Again, the purpose of this is to just be a temporary solution.

Now we need askanim who can get this done. We need rabbonim, to supervise or authorize the halachic aspects of it. And, it seems to me, we need the Iryah to allow it and maybe even subsidize it.

so how do we get this done?

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  1. I read, that a community needs to have a mikve more than a shul. Now can anyone tell me how many shuls there are in RBS C? There is something mentally wrong with an administration, that the only thing that is important is to build more more more, to strangle other populations, without even looking after basic necessities like a mikve. I remember during the election, that Eli Cohen mentioned something about the lack of a mikve in Hefstiba.

  2. Or, just do it the ancient way: build a hole in the ground, and in a few months it will rain. Still way ahead of the iriyah's schedule.



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