Vienna: Parents upset at school which requires students to taste pork, alcohol

Vienna: Parents upset at school which requires students to taste pork, alcohol

In the Vienna office of the Turkish newspaper Zaman the complaint letters are piling up from angry Muslim parents. People are indignant, says editor Aynur Kirci. They say that what the restaurant industry school in the Meidling neighborhood of Vienna requires from its students conflicts with human rights and the Austrian constitution.

He adds that in the 90s, the 'dumpling academy' in Vienna let through a headscarf wearer without any problems, but suddenly everything is different.

Elisabeth Berger, head of the school, requires all parents of students this year, including those who are Muslim, to sign a form. The form states that students taking the cuisine and service course must learn how the Viennese prepare food and drink as well as how to advise customers on their choices. This goes with a corresponding appearance - that is, a headscarf ban while serving.

And since pork is indispensable in cooking, it is obligatory to prepare and taste it. Furthermore, the form explicitly says that students must naturally at least taste alcoholic drinks. For the Muslim parents Berger's requirements are a 'democratic political scandal'.

The head of the municipal school board Susanne Brandsteidl says this approach is completely justified. Everybody has to keep by the house rules, in this case to the curriculum, and there are equal rights and obligations for everybody.

Brandsteidl supports the school principal with a legal opinion which says that the educational goal of the curriculum should be maintained and it is not possible to exempt students based on their faith. On the issue of alcohol, pork and headscarf, the school board is clear - Pork is integral to Austrian cuisine and makes up a large part of the curriculum. Advising customers includes tasting alcoholic drinks.

The professional image of service in a restaurant requires 'wearing appropriate clothing', or more simply put: a Muslim girl serving in the training restaurant shouldn't be wearing a headscarf.

According to Zaman this will be reported widely, possibly even worldwide.

Source: OE24 (German), h/t PI

No comments: