The EU Court of Justice (ECJ) allowing workplaces to ban religious signs worn by people have been rampaging the web lately. Given two cases of religious women wearing an Islamic headscarf and religious signs that represent their belief were then set put as an example by the court.
According to Independent, the European Court of Justice stated that “An internal rule of an undertaking which prohibits the visible wearing of any political, philosophical or religious sign does not constitute direct discrimination.” Furthermore, François Fillon, a candidate in the French presidential election mentioned that the rule could bring about “world peace.”
It was then added to ECJ’s rule that if that kind of rule is not applied, “the willingness of an employer to take account of the wishes of a customer no longer to have the employer's services provided by a worker wearing an Islamic headscarf cannot be considered an occupational requirement that could rule out discrimination.” This case was then said to refer to Asma Bougnaoui, a French designer who was fired due to her client complaining that she was wearing a veil.
BBC then confirmed that EU court rule stated that “political, philosophical or religious” signs were banned. Hence, the policy also affects the ban on crucifixes, skullcaps and turbans as reported.
The ruling then referred to a case in 2003 when Samira Achbita, a Muslim, was fired as a receptionist in G4S security services. The company then didn’t have a rule like banning religious signs, yet when Achbita decided to wear her scarf in 2006, the company had issued a formal ban and fired Achbita. The Muslim woman then decided to go to Belgium’s court to file discrimination.
The same EU ban on religious signs was also received last 2013 by Nadia Eweida. The British Airways Christian worker was then reported to be banned due to wearing her cross donned necklace visibly. It was then reported by NBC News that Eweida won her case since the court ruled that BA failed to prohibit religious discrimination.