Jeremy Browne: Ban Muslim women from wearing veils in schools and public places

Written by | January 21, 2014 | 0

Britain should consider banning Muslim girls and young women from wearing veils in schools and public places, a Home Office minister has said.

Jeremy Browne, a Liberal Democrat, said there needs to be a national debate about whether the state should step in to protect young women from having the veil “imposed” on them.

Mr Browne said he is “instinctively uneasy” about banning behaviour, but suggested the measure may still be necessary to ensure freedom of choice for girls in Muslim communities.

The Home Office minister is the first senior Liberal Democrat to raise such deep concerns about Islamic dress in public places. A growing number of Conservative MPs also want the Government to consider a ban.

Nick Clegg, the Deputy Prime Minister, has suggested he may support banning the veil in classrooms, but downplayed the chances of wider restrictions.

He said: “My own view, I don’t think we should end up like different countries where we tell people how they go about their business. I do think there is an issue with teachers in the classroom…that might be an area where a full veil might be inappropriate.”

The debate was given momentum last week when David Cameron’s spokesman said the Prime Minister would have no problem with the veil being banned in his children’s schools.

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