15 March 2017

Headscarves: PM May says European court ruling not to change UK law

Britain will not make changes to its laws following a ruling by the European Court of Justice that employers banning political and philosophical signs such as headscarves did not constitute direct discrimination, Prime Minister Theresa May said on Wednesday.

Tuesday’s ruling evoked a mixed reaction in Britain. Amid concerns in minority communities, May said in the House of Commons: “We have a strong tradition in this country of freedom of expression.

“Of course this case came up particularly in relation to the wearing of the veil - there will be times when it's right to ask for a veil to be removed, but it is not for government to tell women what they can and cannot wear and we want to continue that strong tradition of freedom of expression.”

Reacting to the ruling, the Muslim Council of Britain said, “It is a sad day for justice and equality. At a time when populism and bigotry are at an all-time high, we fear that this ruling will serve as a green light to those wishing to normalise discrimination against faith communities.” [Hindustan Times] Read more