• GAYA Magazine

"Losing My Religion" - The EU's ban that has changed the workplace



"The European Union's top court has ruled that European companies can ban the wearing of any political, philosophical or religious sign."

'That's me in the corner, That's me in the spotlight, Losing my religion' - REM said it. Muslim women have been hushed into the corner and pulled into the spotlight, many times over.

Discrimination - the unjust or prejudicial treatment of different categories of people.

That's the dictionary's definition of the word. So how is the EU ban on religious wear not discriminatory? No matter who you may be, a Muslim, a Jew, a Christian, a Sikh, this ban that has been legally passed affects you. Muslim women can't wear the hijab, Sikh men can't wear their turbans, Christians can't wear the cross around their neck and so on. It's 2017 - we're in the age where individualism is highly valued. This ban essentially removes our freedom to express our individuality.

According to the ban, it is said "an employer's desire to project an image of neutrality towards both its public and private sector customers is legitimate" - this is pretty subjective and consequently opens the doors to dangerous grounds. In time, companies may decide to use this to discriminate against other outward expression of individualism such as tattoos, hair cuts, perhaps even sexuality.

The EU ban which is now legal undermines the global efforts for freedom of expression n sadly (and dangerously) legitimizes discrimination.


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