Local Teenager "Discriminated against" for Headscarf
Hairdresser says essence of work is hair display
Ms Noah, an experienced stylist, has been rejected for 25 jobs and had been invited to the salon for a trial day in March after sending Ms Desrosiers her CV.
Yesterday, she said: "The advertised job of junior assistant stylist was perfect for me. I did NVQs in hairdressing at college and have 18 months experience at a salon in Ealing Broadway. On the phone, Sarah sounded very keen on me because of my experience and qualifications. I sent her my CV and she invited me in a few days later for a trial day."
She claims that when she arrived she was discriminated against and treated rudely after Ms Desrosiers realised she wore a headscarf. Ms Noah said: "When I got there, she looked at me in shock. She started making excuses about wanting someone who lived locally but I knew it was the headscarf. "She kept repeating 'You really should have told me'. She asked if I wore it all the time and I said 'Yes'. She asked if I would take it off for work and I said 'No'."
The teenager said: "Wearing a headscarf is very important for my religion and non-negotiable. It is about showing your modest side and being respectful in front of others, particularly males.
"I am British-born and know the urban, funky look. Just because I wear a headscarf does not mean that I do not follow the latest trends and fashions. Afterwards, I felt so devastated and depressed. It has always been my ambition to be a hairdresser but I have given up now after being rejected 25 times. It is always because of my headscarf whether they say it or not." Ms Noah's case will be heard in January at an employment tribunal over three days.
November 10, 2007