The Netherlands on final hurdle to pass burqa ban 

Dutch senators passed a bill that would partially ban burqas in educational institutions, on public transport, in government institutions and hospitals. 

Lara Bullens
Lara Bullens NewsMavens, Western Europe
The Netherlands on final hurdle to pass burqa ban  - NewsMavens
Afghan women wearing burqas. Wikicommons

Why this story matters:

The bill, which got a majority from the ruling coalition (44 to 31 votes), is the final hurdle before a partial burqa ban becomes written in Dutch law. The bill outlines a legal ban on wearing clothing that covers the face or only shows the eyes in public spaces. 

The idea behind the law is a song that has already been sung.

Senators supporting the bill argue that the burqa hinders communication or security. However, there have been countless examples of people who manage to solve the security and communication 'issues' that arise from covering one's face. This argument simply does not hold.

Opponents of the ban (the D66 party, GroenLinks, PvdA and the Socialist Party) say there is "no added value" to it, and that it is "counterproductive". 

During a seminar I attended at the European Youth Event in Strasbourg last month, which focused on the burqa ban, the panel was composed of mainly women. There was one male among the 4 panelists. All three women were Muslim feminists, and were visibly exhausted of making their case for religious freedom. Hanane Karimi, a French sociologist, said something that -- despite its simplicity -- beautifully summed up the case against a burqa ban: 

"You can't emancipate someone against their will."

For Hanane Karimi, Ruqaiya Harris and Aquilah Sandhu -- the three panelists -- repression is not a solution. But in the Netherlands, it is still being considered.

Details from the story:

  • Dutch senators passed a bill (44 to 31 votes) that would partially ban burqas, notably in public spaces.
  • This is the final hurdle before the bill officially gets passed as a law.
  • “The bill proposes a legal ban on wearing clothing that completely covers the face, or only shows the eyes, in educational institutions, on public transport, in government institutions and hospitals.”
  • Four of the five ruling parties in the governing coalition were in favor of the bill.
  • Implementing the ban would mean handing out fines of about 400 euros.
  • France was the first European country to ban the full-face veil in public spaces in 2011.
EDITOR'S PICK:
inbox_large_illu Created with Sketch.
Tired of the news media’s prevailing male perspective? We are too.

Get our newsletters composed exclusively by female journalists from all over Europe.

WITH FINANCIAL SUPPORT FROM:
SUPPORTED BY:

Project #Femfacts co-financed by European Commission Directorate-General for Communications Networks, Content and Technology as part of the Pilot Project – Media Literacy For All

The information and views set out on this website are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the official opinion of the European Union. Neither the European Union institutions and bodies nor any person acting on their behalf may be held responsible for the use which may be made of the information contained therein.

STRATEGIC PARTNERS:
NewsMavens
NewsMavens is a media start-up within Gazeta Wyborcza, Poland's largest liberal broadsheet published by Agora S.A. NewsMavens is currently financed by Gazeta Wyborcza and Google DNI Fund.
Is something happening in your country that Newsmavens should cover?
CORE TEAM
Zuzanna Ziomecka
Zuzanna Ziomecka EDITOR IN CHIEF
Lea Berriault-Jauvin
Lea Berriault Managing Editor
Jessica Sirotin
Jessica Sirotin EDITOR
Ada Petriczko
Ada Petriczko EDITOR
Gazeta Wyborcza, Agora SA Czerska 8/10 00-732, Warsaw Poland
The e-mail addresses provided above are not intended for recruitment purposes. Messages concerning recruitment will be deleted immediately. Your personal data provided as part of your correspondence with Zuzanna,Lea, Jessica and Ada will be processed for the purpose of resolving the issue you contacted us about. The data provided in your email is controlled by Agora S.A. with its registered office in Warsaw Czerska 8/10 Street (00-732). You can find more information about the processing and protection of your personal data at https://newsmavens.com/transparency-policy