The EU Courts have ruled in favor of the employers over a case of a Belgium woman being fired from her secretarial position over her wish to wear an Islamic headscarf, the courts claim she did not suffer direct discrimination.
The original dispute which made it to the European Court of Justice began over 10 years ago, Samira Achbita worked as a receptionist for security company G4S, she began wearing a hijab a year after she started, G4S did not approve of her decision.
Two months after the dispute began G4S made a company policy which enforced that "employees are prohibited, in the workplace, from wearing any visible signs of their political, philosophical or religious beliefs and/or from engaging in any observance of such beliefs."
A day before the policy was enacted G4S decided to fire her as they believed she would not able to fulfill her duties for customers and clients who do not want to deal with a Muslim woman wearing a headscarf.
After a lengthy trial, the court came to the conclusion that the Muslim woman was not treated any differently from other staff members as her employer claimed to have a general rule of all staff disallowed from displaying religious or political items.
Social media users have reacted negatively to the recent EU ruling.
EU makes hijab ban legal— AwkwardMuslim.com (@AwkwardMuslim) March 14, 2017
Muslim woman gets fired for wearing hijab
Muslim woman gets hasanat for struggle
Thanks for the good deeds EU ????????
Society which endorses prostitution&indecent exposure of women has no right to criticise the preservation of Muslim woman's honour #HijabBan— ??? ???? (@BirdsOfJannah) March 14, 2017
Feminists were so loud when it came to freeing their nipples but where's their outrage now with the hijab ban. An ACTUAL issue— N? (@AliNaya171) March 14, 2017
There needs to be a distinction between those religious symbols considered mandatory (hijab; turban) & those considered preference #hijabban— Nouri Sardar (@NouriSardar) March 15, 2017
How this ruling affects Muslim women who wear the hijab?
The new ruling will give more leeway for employers to discriminate against Muslim women who wear the hijab. The EU Courts decision makes it justifiable for an employer to fire a Muslim woman for wearing a head scarf as long as they have a policy against religous and political statements.