Muslim women sue Denver Airport ground services company that forbade head scarves

Source: The Denver Post

By Kirk Mitchell

A federal jury trial began Monday in which JetStream Ground Services was accused of not allowing female Muslim employees to wear clothing required of them by their faith, including head scarves.

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) sued in 2013, seeking back pay and compensatory damages for plaintiffs Safia Abdulle Ali, Sahra Bashi Abdirahman, Hana Bokku, Sadiyo Hassan Jama and Amino Warsame. The case is being heard in U.S. District Court in Denver.

denver airport

Denver Airport

The EEOC claims that JetStream violated the civil rights of Muslim women by refusing to hire them or firing them or reducing their hours if they were religiously observant.

JetStream attorney Raymond Deeny said the company does not discriminate against women but had to lay off numerous employees when the company lost a contract with Denver International Airport.

“We are not motivated to drive these people away,” Deeny said during opening statements. “The highest percentage of people we hire are of Ethiopian heritage. … It has nothing to do with head scarves.”

Read more

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5 replies

  1. Stories like this offend me. Night after night and expert after expert continuously say a woman being covered by the burka or niqab is her choice. NOT forced upon her by faith. Therefore b.s. stories like this should be either laughed out of court – OR the women charged as a counter suit – this topic has lost any relevance and meaning in the west. Every other faith group gave up it’s historical and national costumes to acclimate to western culture. Freedom to practise faith means at home. NOT at work. It’s time our courts get back to this – as was their principles when so many countries legal systems were established.

  2. I’d like to go to work wearing a t shirt and jeans. Maybe I should demand that my sincerely held beliefs are also respected?

  3. ASHDEVILLE – YOU brighten my day! In Ontario – we cannot have hats, sunglasses, toques, etc…for a driver’s photo. yet Muslim men and women can have ceremonial hats, table cloths, drapes, whatever they wish and that is so absolutely allowed it is sickening. I have known farmers and professional hockey players that have worn baseball caps forever – and they are asked to take them off. Reasonable accommodation was the principal. The rest of us are so sick of special interest groups and minority rights dictating the overwhelming majority – that’s why I believe Trump is so popular. It doesn’t make him right – just popular as the pulse of a nation. GOOD luck with the t shirt and jeans! I’d applaud your leadership!

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