Equality and the Veil

When Samira Haddad applied for a job as an Arabic teacher at the Islamic College Amsterdam, she was turned down because she, as a Muslim woman, did not wear a headscarf. The Dutch Equal Treatment Commission, an organisation offering legal advice, has decided that the rejection of Ms Haddad is unjust, because non-Muslim teachers at the school are not obliged to wear headscarves; there is now talk of discrimination.

A non-public school in the Netherlands can enforce a dress code, but it must be uniform. In this case, the school was only forcing Muslim teachers to wear a veil, and so was discriminating against those Muslims who preferred not wearing one.

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