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Veil teacher loses discrimination case October 19, 2006

Posted by C.A.R.D in Card, Case, Citizens Against Racism and Discrimination, Discrimination, harassment, Muslim.

A Muslim teaching assistant who refused to remove her veil has lost her claim of discrimination and harassment against the school which suspended her.

But Aishah Azmi, 24, won her employment tribunal case for victimisation and was awarded �1,000 for “injury to feelings”.

Headfield Church of England Junior School in Dewsbury, West Yorkshire, claimed face-to-face communication was essential for Ms Azmi’s job as a bilingual support worker.

But Mrs Azmi refused to remove her veil and Kirklees Council suspended her from teaching.

In a statement Mrs Azmi criticised ministers who waded into the subsequent row saying it made her “fearful of the consequences for Muslim women in this country who want to work”.

She is considering an appeal against the decision to dismiss her three claims of indirect discrimination, direct discrimination and harassment.

“It is clear that discrimination against me has taken place and I am disappointed that the employment tribunal has not been able to uphold that part of my claim,” she said.

“However, I am pleased that the tribunal have recognised the victimising way in which the school and the local education authority have handled this matter and the distress that has caused me.”

She went on: “Muslim women who wear the veil are not aliens, and politicians need to recognise that what they say can have a very dangerous impact on the lives of the minorities they treat as outcasts.

“Integration requires people like me to be in the workplace so that people can see that we are not to be feared or mistrusted.

“Sadly the intervention of ministers in my case (against the ministerial code) makes me fearful of the consequences for Muslim women in this country who want to work.”

Source: ITV News

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