Feds Sue A & F over refusal to allow Muslim headscarves in theworkplace

Robert Sheridan rs at robertsheridan.com
Thu Sep 2 07:11:11 PDT 2010

  Assuming that the A&F store policy lawfully forbids the wearing of 
religious symbols, I presume that employees may not wear a necklace 
bearing a cross or a chai, nor a yarmulka, nor a tattoo of a religious 
symbol, nor a Sikh turban, or the like.

Broadening the question to the issue of dominant cultural mores, as 
asserted in the reader- comment to the news article, what do you think 
of legislation pending in France subjecting Muslim women who choose to 
wear a burqa (a head-to-toe overgarment with openings to see and 
breathe) to a fine?  Would ban-the-burqa legislation, if enacted in the 
U.S., likely be constitutional as a general law only incidentally 
affecting a specific minority, a la Smith v. Employment Division claims 
of religious freedom in light of a ban on a narcotic drug used as a 
sacrament?  I believe that the argument that the covering conceals 
identity from the general public and the authorities was rejected as a 
compelling state interest in cases involving masks worn in public 
decades ago, if recollection serves, leaving the main motive against the 
burqa a religious one.

Further regarding cultural pressure, are nursing mothers 
constitutionally entitled to nurse uncovered in public w/o fear of 
citation or arrest for some form of alleged indecent exposure or 
disorderly conduct?


On 9/2/2010 6:22 AM, hamilton02 at aol.com wrote:
> I agree with this Marc here.  And to insert some facts into the debate, A&  F has a non-negotiable policy regarding what employees wear from top to bottom.  It is not a general look-good policy, but a specific brand-based policy that goes to its marketing plan overall
> There is no justification for imposing on the company a requirement that its employees have rights to water down its public image. It is a clothing company
> Marci
> Sent from my Verizon Wireless BlackBerry
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Marc R Poirier<Marc.Poirier at shu.edu>
> Sender: conlawprof-bounces at lists.ucla.edu
> Date: Thu, 2 Sep 2010 09:14:08
> To: 'Robert Sheridan'<rs at robertsheridan.com>; CONLAWPROFS professors<CONLAWPROF at lists.ucla.edu>
> Subject: RE: Feds Sue A&  F over refusal to allow Muslim headscarves in the
> 	workplace
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