25 January 2017

Hairdresser convicted for refusing to serve hijab-wearing woman appeals case to high court

Merete Hodne was initially given an £800 fine by police in October, 2015 after she refused to serve Malika Bayan in her establishment in Bryne, south-west Norway, because she was wearing a hijab.

However as the 47-year-old businessman, who said she was fully within her rights to not colour Ms Bayan’s, refused to pay the fine she was taken to court.

The case has already been heard twice, as Ms Hodne appealed the ruling in September which initially found she had discriminated against the 24-year-old.

Contesting the ruling, the hairdresser claimed the court was unduly influenced by her previous membership of an anti-Islamic organisation.

However in January the courts upheld the first conviction and the businesswoman has now said she is ready to challenge it in Norway’s highest court.

“To me the hijab is the same as an Isis flag. The hijab is a political symbol,” Ms Hodne said after the January trial according to Stavanger Aftenblad. [Daily Express] Read more