Amsterdam mayor: cut burka-wearers benefits
Women who refuse to give up wearing the burka for jobs should have unemployment benefits cut, says Amsterdam Mayor Job Cohen.Amsterdam – Amsterdam Mayor Job Cohen suggests women who refuse jobs rather than give up wearing the Islamic burka should not receive unemployment benefit in an interview with daily newspaper Trouw.
In the interview, Cohen said women who fail to find a job because they don a burka should not expect to receive unemployment benefits for those genuinely trying to find employment.
"Personally, I think it's terrible to see a woman in a burka. But whether or not I like something isn't a reason to forbid it," Cohen tells the paper.
The Amsterdam mayor opposes a general ban on the burka as he believes it is an expression of religious belief. However, he believes the burka is an obstacle in situations where contact with other people is necessary, such as at school or in the workplace. There, women should choose a less restrictive head covering.
I agree that if you can't get work because you insist on wearing the burka, you shouldn't apply for [unemployment] benefit."
In 2006, Diemen local council attempted to introduce such a ban on benefits for people unemployed because of wearing the burka. However, an Amsterdam court reversed the ban, ruling it illegal.
The lower house of parliament then introduced a motion to allow councils to reduce benefits for burka-wearers. The Freedom Party was the only party to support a no benefits vote for burka-wearers.
Radio Netherlands / Expatica