Whilst some countries like France are banning certain Muslim women attire creating a wave of hostility and a rise of Islamophobia, there are others who are showing better ways of harmonizing the Muslim community in their society.
Police Scotland has announced that the hijab will become part of its official uniform as it aims to create a more diverse force. They hope the move will “encourage women from Muslim communities, who may previously not have seen policing as a career option, to reconsider”.
Fittingly, people took to Twitter to applaud the move and send a message to the bigots and Islamophobes around the world:
In a statement, chief constable Phil Gormley said:
I am delighted to make this announcement and welcome the support from both the Muslim community, and the wider community, as well as police officers and staff.
“Like many other employers, especially in the public sector, we are working towards ensuring our service is representative of the communities we serve. I hope that this addition to our uniform options will contribute to making our staff mix more diverse and adds to the life skills, experiences and personal qualities that our officers and staff bring to policing the communities of Scotland.”
If only the French could have been similarly accommodating:
In Canada, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police has declared to allow its female Muslim officers to wear hijabs, updating an iconic uniform “to better reflect the diversity” in Canada’s communities. Scott Bardsley, a spokesman for Ralph Goodale, the public safety minister, told the AFP news agency:
The commissioner of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police recently approved this addition to the uniform. This is intended to better reflect the diversity in our communities and encourage more Muslim women to consider the Royal Canadian Mounted Police as a career option.
The policy was quietly enacted despite the fact that no officer had yet asked to wear the hijab as of earlier this year. However, about 30 officers had asked for a relaxing of the rules for religious or cultural reasons over the past two years, the Montreal daily La Presse reported, citing an internal correspondence between Goodale and the force’s commissioner Bob Paulson.
Zaid Hamid took the moment to tweet how there’s a correlation between countries showing tolerance and radical terror attacks.
The memo also said that the type of hijab was selected to be included in the uniform that could be removed quickly and easily if needed.
The Royal Canadian Mounted Police became the third police force in Canada to add the hijab option after Toronto and Edmonton. The uniform – a red serge tunic, leather riding boots and wide-brimmed felt campaign hat – dates back to the 1880s and was last updated in 1990 to allow Sikh officers to wear turbans.