Dutch burqa “ban” to go into effect august 1

As of August 1, 2019, those wearing face-covering garments put themselves at risk of 150 Euro fines. According to the Public Prosecution Service (OM), the “ban” applies to public spaces such as government buildings, public transportation, and hospitals and applies to any face-covering garment including balaclava, full-face helmets, and masks. Of course, however, this definition also includes religious garments like the burqa and niqab. Fines and request for removal act as the start of legal repercussions for those not in compliance of the new law, but punishment can increase should those in violation fail to comply or commit additional crimes while covered.

Considered a partial “ban”, the new law does not include items such as headscarves, hats, or face paint, while also allowing face covering to occur should it be necessary for sport, work or at events and parties.

The law, which was passed the country’s Upper House by a 43-32 vote in 2018 and was first proposed by Geert Wilders in 2005, joins The Netherlands with the likes of France, Belgium, Denmark and several other countries on Europe and North America in implementing legislation directly penalizing Muslim women. Proponents consider the issue a matter of public safety while detractors say it is directly discriminatory to Muslim women.

Source: Het Parool


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