Young girls banned from wearing headscarves in primary schools

This week a controversial new law has been approved by Austrian MPs. It will ban headscarfs in primary schools across the nation.

Eliza Archer
Eliza Archer NewsMavens, Europe
Young girls banned from wearing headscarves in primary schools - NewsMavens
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Why this story matters:

Young girls across Austria will no longer be allowed to wear a headscarf to school after MPs approved a ban proposed by the ruling party. According to the legislation, any “ideologically or religiously influenced clothing which is associated with the covering of the head” will be banned.

The law is particularly controversial as it specifically targets the Islamic faith as it is designed to be “a signal against political Islam”. MP Rudolf Taschner, a member of parliament for the ÖVP said it would protect girls against “enslavement”.

Both the Sikh patka worn by Sikh boys and the Jewish kippah will be allowed. Therefore, the law will only affect young girls of Islamic faith.

The law has been labelled a “direct assault on the religious freedom of Austrian Muslims”.

Details from the story:

  • The law was passed by the center-right People’s party (ÖVP) and far right Freedom party (FPÖ).
  • The law is expected to be challenged in the constitutional court on the grounds of discrimination.
  • Chancellor Sebastian Kurz also banned full face coverings in 2017 as part of an integration policy.
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