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Halifax Today

Supermarket says sorry in hijab row

Emily Heward

The hijab: it is worn out of respect

 

A SUPERMARKET has apologised after a pensioner was told to remove her hijab.

 

- A security guard at the new Morrisons store at Illingworth, Halifax, told the 65-year-old Muslim she couldn't go inside unless she took off the headwear, which covers the hair for religious reasons. The woman said she was left "humiliated and embarrassed" but gave in because she felt intimidated. She said she was so ashamed she didn't tell anyone for weeks until her son asked her to go back to the store with him. A spokesman for the store said: "Morrisons embraces cultural diversity in its customers and its colleagues.
"It is absolutely not our policy to ask any customer to remove headwear, including garments worn for religious reasons.
"We apologise that she was asked to do so. This should not have happened.
"The security guard works for a third-party company.
"We have spoken to them to reiterate our policy that we do not ask anyone to remove headwear when entering a store."


- The store manager has apologised to the family, who come from Illingworth.
The woman does not want to be named.
Her 23-year-old son, who also asked to remain anonymous, said he was furious at the way his mother had been treated.
He said: "She was in tears. I was completely gobsmacked.
"A lot of Asian ladies wear headscarves. It's a respect thing. If you asked them to take them off they would be totally embarrassed.
"But she thought if she didn't do as he said it would look dodgy or she would be told to get out. Now she is scared to go back."
He said when he went to the store to complain, the blunder was put down to a no-hoodies policy.
"I'm sure they know the difference between a headscarf and a hoodie," he said. "I just hope it doesn't happen to anybody else."