in News March 20, 2017

The ECJ rules against religious symbols

The highest court within the EU, the ECJ (European Court of Justice), has made a controversial decision to ban religious symbols from the workplace. Such actions have sparked tensions amongst certain groups of people namely the Muslim community who believe that this decision was singling out the hijab.

Indeed, the court case dealt with a woman from Belgium who wished to wear the hijab to work but was dismissed for going against the company’s orders. However, the ruling was referring to all religious symbols and not solely the Muslim headscarf although some commentators have wished to argue this.

In other words, a ban of this nature rules that turbans, crosses, skull caps and all other religious symbols must be omitted from the workplace. As such, there are many repercussions related to such a ban.

Firstly, it leads to a feeling of animosity amongst all those who would like to wear these symbols during their day to day life. It makes people feel as though they are not welcome in the workplace in their chosen attire and that they have to change who they are before they step into a building.

Eventually, this could lead to people rebelling against the ECJ and wearing these symbols as they deem fit. As a result, it may lead to even more tension within the workplace such as rows with management and then a mass exodus of religious people from certain professions.

Some have argued that this ban is now hindering integration as it is pushing away certain religious groups from the workplace. This is not something we should be condoning insofar as Europe is a melting pot of people from many faiths.

With this in mind, it’s important that people of all faiths make it clear how this ban will affect society as a whole. The PM’s recent remarks on the ECJ ruling are encouraging confirming that Britain is an open and pluralistic society of people of all faiths and none.

in News March 20, 2017