Until relatively recently, women living in the largest Hasidic community in America could expect a team of men to show up when they needed an ambulance—a potentially compromising proposition, considering ultra-Orthodox Judaism insists upon strict gender separation. To make the Orthodox women of Brooklyn's Borough Park neighborhood feel more comfortable in a medical emergency, lawyer Rachel "Ruchie" Freier founded an all-woman Hasidic EMT corps: Her efforts are the subject of a new documentary called 93Queen, which will be released in New York City theaters on July 25th.

93Queen is the debut film from Paula Eiselt, a filmmaker from Long Island. Perusing a Yiddish website roughly six years ago, Eiselt stumbled on a blurb about a Hasidic woman forming the female equivalent of Hatzolah, the exclusively male-staffed volunteer ambulance corps. Having grown up in a neighborhood with a Hatzolah, Eiselt tells Gothamist she was surprised to learn they banned women from joining—and pleased to hear about Freier's work, a team of women basically saying, "If you don’t have space for us, we’re going to make our own space."

"I had never seen or heard of Hasidic women doing that before," Eiselt said. She ended up following Freier's growing team, Ezras Nashim (which translates to "helping women"), from 2013 to early 2018. 93Queen documents Freier's intensive efforts to establish her service, even in the face of backlash from men—and women—in her community who view the project as a challenge to Orthodox beliefs.

Yet even with resistance from Hatzolah, which Eiselt says has "claimed EMS as a male space" and which reportedly threatened to boycott the hospital and supply companies working with Ezras Nashim, Freier wins a radio code from the New York City Fire Department: You guessed it, "93Queen." And ultimately, the project is a success. The Regional EMS Council of New York City awarded Ezras Nashim "EMS Agency of the Year" in early July. As for Freier, she went on to become the first known Hasidic women to hold public office after being elected Brooklyn's 5th Civil Court District judge in 2016.

With her film, Eiselt says she wants to increase representation for Hasidic women, and emphasize that "change, and especially feminism, looks differently in different communities."

"Especially in the political climate that we’re in," she adds, "93Queen really offers a model of progress that works from the bottom up." Watch the trailer below.