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Netherlands City Council Follows Migrant Party Proposal On Headscarves For Municipal Workers

November 23rd, 2021 15:45

Dutch media is report­ing a major­i­ty of par­ties in the Utrecht city coun­cil have instruct­ed the city’s may­or to intro­duce leg­is­la­tion allow­ing munic­i­pal offi­cers – includ­ing police aux­il­iaries – to wear the hijab as part of their uni­form. Accord­ing to the AD arti­cle:

Novem­ber 12, 2021 Cur­rent­ly, police aux­il­liaries in the Nether­lands are not allowed to wear vis­i­ble reli­gious sym­bols – such as a head­scarf or skull­cap. But the Utrecht city coun­cil decid­ed on Thurs­day evening at the ini­tia­tive of the [DENK] fac­tion that this should come to an end. A large major­i­ty of the par­ties instruct­ed may­or Sharon Dijks­ma to intro­duce this before the sum­mer of next year at the lat­est. [Trans­lat­ed from Dutch using Google.]

Read the rest here

Police aux­il­iaries, ‘gemeen­telijke hand­havers’ in Dutch, have a wide range of pow­ers and some are equipped with items such as hand­cuffs, batons, and pep­per spray.

Accord­ing to the arti­cle, coun­cilors fol­lowed a pro­pos­al by Mah­mut Sun­gur of DENK, who has called the adop­tion “fan­tas­tic,” adding that it offered a lot of oppor­tu­ni­ties and helped the pro­fes­sion to become more acces­si­ble for peo­ple with a migra­tion back­ground. The motion was passed with 34 votes in favor and nine against. DENK said that, with the deci­sion, Utrecht would become a “fore­run­ner of social change” and that exist­ing poli­cies in oth­er coun­tries, includ­ing in the US, Cana­da, and Swe­den, worked fine. The nation­al trade union BOA ACP has come out against the deci­sion, say­ing that “uni­form pro­fes­sions should radi­ate neu­tral­i­ty.” In 2017, the reg­u­lar police in Ams­ter­dam had con­sid­ered allow­ing head­scarves as part of the uni­form, with the pro­pos­al being shelved after resis­tance by Dutch MPs.

DENK is a pro­gres­sive Dutch migrant par­ty with a strong pro-Turk­ish stance and which has met with a lob­by group affil­i­at­ed with Turkey’s rul­ing par­ty. In May 2021, the Glob­al Influ­ence Oper­a­tions Report (GIOR) report­ed that for­mer DENK chair and co-founder Tuna­han Kuzu had par­tic­i­pat­ed in a pro-Pales­tine protest in the Hague where anti-Semit­ic slo­gans were shouted.

The wear­ing of the hijab is one of the most impor­tant issues for the Glob­al Mus­lim Brotherhood.

Note: An ear­li­er ver­sion of this arti­cle incor­rect­ly referred to the pro­posed bill as includ­ing Nation­al Police officers––not only munic­i­pal police auxiliaries––and also wrong­ly stat­ed that the Utrecht police union protest­ed the motion, where­as the protest came rather from the nation­al trade union BOA ACP. The arti­cle has been updat­ed to reflect the above,