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  • March 2017 : Restrictions on religious symbols in the workplace

In March, following a long and protracted conflict between the municipal authorities in Stavanger and the board at Blidensol, a privately-run healthcare facility, on the legality of a dress code banning the Islamic veil among staff, the Equality and Anti-Discrimination Tribunal found in favor of the municipality, pronouncing the incompatibility between the dress code and the Anti-Discrimination laws (see Equality and Non-Discrimination).
While this local conflict is still unresolved, the initiative to prohibit the veil as part of a work uniform, together with the recent decisions of the Court of Justice of the European Union in Case C-157/15 (Samira Achbita v. G4S Secure Solutuions NV), which found that the prohibition of the Islamic veil as part of the uniform of a security company did not constitute direct discrimination, have led to renewed interest in the issue in Norwegian public debate. So far, the most tangible result has been the proposal to ban all “conspicuous religious symbols” among staff in Oslo municipality, a case that is still pending before the City Council.

D 21 juin 2017    AHelge Årsheim

CNRS Unistra Dres Gsrl

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