CAIR-NJ will work with bank officials on a policy that ensures security and religious freedom
(SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ, 10/4/2013) -- Following intervention by the New Jersey chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-NJ), Century Savings Bank officials say they have removed posters announcing a policy banning "hats, hoods, headgear, and sunglasses" for security purposes.
The posters had an image of a woman wearing hijab (head scarf), along with images of a woman in sunglasses, a man in a hard-hat, and a man wearing a cap.
Yesterday, CAIR-NJ asked the bank to review that "inappropriate and discriminatory" policy that would impact Muslim women wearing scarves, observant Sikh and Jewish men who wear turbans and yarmulkes respectively, and would logically be applied to Orthodox Jewish women who often wear wigs for religious reasons or Catholic nuns who wear habits.
"We thank Century Savings Bank for taking prompt action to avoid the appearance that they discriminate against those who wear certain attire for religious reasons," said CAIR New Jersey Civil Rights Director Khurrum Ali.
Ali said CAIR-NJ will work with bank officials to craft a policy that ensures both security and religious freedom.
NOTE: The American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC) was also involved in the resolution of this issue. ADC, led by one of its national board members, verified the existence of the posters and sent a letter to the bank last Friday.
CAIR helped resolve a number of similar incidents nationwide in which Muslim customers wearing hijab have been harassed or denied service because of "no hats" policies being implemented in banks nationwide.
SEE: 'No Hats, No Hoods, No Sunglasses'
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CAIR offers a booklet, called "An Employer's Guide to Islamic Religious Practices," to help corporate managers gain a better understanding of Islam and Muslims.
CAIR is America's largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance the understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.
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