Dutch court upheld ban on religious headscarves in Catholic school

On April 4, 2011, a Dutch court in Amsterdam upheld a ban on Islamic headscarves at Don Bosco College, a Catholic school in Volendam. The court stated that the school had an interest in maintaining its Catholic character and the ban did not constitute religious discrimination because similar, non-religious headwear is also banned on school grounds. The decision contradicted a finding from the country's Equal Treatment Commission (CGB) that banning Islamic headscarves amounts to religious discrimination. Religious headscarves, or burqas have been banned in the schools of multiple European nations, including all Dutch-speaking Belgium schools and Germany. The bans have received support from a December 2008 decision by the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR), which determined there was no human rights violation when two students in France were expelled for refusing to remove their headscarves.


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