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Headscarves, Skull Caps and Crosses: Is the proposed French ban safe from European legal challenge? CEPS Policy Briefs No. 49, 1 April 2004

Riley, Alan (2004) Headscarves, Skull Caps and Crosses: Is the proposed French ban safe from European legal challenge? CEPS Policy Briefs No. 49, 1 April 2004. [Policy Paper]

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    Abstract

    [From the Introduction]. On 10 February 2004, by an overwhelming majority, the French National Assembly voted to ban state school pupils wearing obvious religious symbols, including large Christian crosses, Jewish skull caps, Sikh turbans and headscarves, such as the Islamic Hijab on school premises.(1) The ban was approved by the Senate on March 3rd, and will come into force in time for the beginning of the new school year in September 2004.2 While the proposed ban has aroused controversy throughout Europe and beyond, there has been little consideration so far given to the question whether, if the ban is enacted, it can successfully survive European legal challenge in the French and European courts. The existing case law on the subject in national supreme courts such as the Judicial Committee of the House of Lords, the British supreme court, and the Bundesverfassungsgericht, the German supreme court, does not provide much comfort to the French authorities. In each case, although for differing reasons, these supreme courts have rejected as disproportionate absolute prohibitions on the wearing of clothing suffused with religious symbols, such as headscarves and turbans.

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    Item Type: Policy Paper
    Subjects for non-EU documents: Countries > France
    EU policies and themes > External relations > EU-Islam
    Other > religion-general (also see EU-Islam)
    EU policies and themes > Policies & related activities > law & legal affairs-general (includes international law)
    Subjects for EU documents: UNSPECIFIED
    EU Series: UNSPECIFIED
    ["eprint_fieldname_eusries" not defined]: UNSPECIFIED
    EU Annual Reports: UNSPECIFIED
    Series: Series > Centre for European Policy Studies (Brussels) > CEPS Policy Briefs
    Depositing User: Phil Wilkin
    Official EU Document: No
    Language: English
    Date Deposited: 15 Apr 2007
    Page Range: p. 9
    Last Modified: 15 Feb 2011 17:43
    URI: http://aei.pitt.edu/id/eprint/6574

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