Dress Code Controversy

21 March 2017

New ruling revives controversy

The European Court of Justice has ruled that companies can ban employees from wearing the Islamic headscarf, in case it was part of a broader prohibition of religious and political symbols. The ruling has triggered debates on whether the decision fosters Islamophobia across Europe.

In France, where a previous ruling on burkinis generated passionate discussions with international repercusion, the decision was celebrated by François Fillon, the conservative candidate in the presidential election, who called the ruling “an immense relief” to contribute to “social peace”.

On the other hand, campaign groups said the court might have worsened intolerance by suggesting that “faith communities are no longer welcome”. The United Sikhs advocacy group qualified the ruling as “disturbing” and contrary to fundamental human rights.