Union launches bid to remove headscarf ban

Union launches bid to remove headscarf ban

ANKARA - Hürriyet Daily News
Union launches bid to remove headscarf ban

Union members hold a rally against headscarf ban in schools in İzmir. Hürriyet photo

An umbrella trade union has launched a campaign and petition to lift a ban on wearing headscarves in government offices.

The Confederation of Public Servants’ Trade Unions (Memur-Sen) aims to collect 10 million signatures as part of the campaign, “10 Million-Signature Campaign for Free Dress Code in Public Areas.” “Memur-Sen, which is the biggest confederation of public servants with its 650,000 members, has decided to collect 10 million signatures by also including the opinion of the public in the process, to introduce it to the Prime Ministry,” the union said on its website.

The campaigners have held various actions including a demonstration in front of Parliament on Nov. 30, 2012, and a civil disobedience action Jan. 2 involving going to workplaces with dress code violations.

On Jan. 25, a female lawyer entered a Turkish court wearing a headscarf for the first time, following the revoking of a regulation banning the headscarf in judicial institutions by the Cabinet.

The general ban on wearing Muslim religious headscarves in government offices and public primary schools continues, although the ban has not been enforced in universities and is often ignored in some workplaces.