‘Hijab-Friendly’ Policy Urged in U.S. Prisons

Dina al-Shibeeb, Al Arabiya, May 24, 2013

The Council on American-Islamic Relations is aiming for a uniform “hijab-friendly” policy to allow Muslim women to keep their head cover during detention and photos in all local and federal U.S. prisons.

“I’m working on several pending cases in different states… and I’m in touch with an attorney for the Department of Justice’s Office of Civil Rights,” Nadhira al-Khalili, legal counsel for CAIR, told Al Arabiya.

Novi recently became the first locality in Michigan to officially permit Muslim women to don their head cover during detention and photos at the local prison.

“There are other accommodations in other localities in Michigan for Muslim females to keep their hijab during detainment. However, Novi is the first locality in Michigan that has made it an official policy,” Dawud Walid, executive director of CAIR’s Michigan chapter, told Al Arabiya.

“If hijab is allowed in the military, and U.S. driving licenses permit women IDs with hijab, then the same logic can be applied,” Walid said. “Hijab doesn’t impede the identity of women.”

Women’s reactions

While some women take off their scarves, even in the presence of males, for fear of reprisals by sheriff deputies, others have resisted.

In North Carolina, “a woman was arrested for making a telephone threat to a family member she was quarrelling with. Upon arrest and booking, she was told to remove her scarf. She told the sheriffs that it was her right to wear the scarf, and she refused to take it off,” Khalili said.

However, she “was held down on the floor by two male deputy sheriffs, and a female removed the scarf. She wasn’t given her scarf back until she left the jail. She had to appear in front of a judge uncovered. She was admitted to a hospital because of the trauma.”

Having a uniform policy covering about 3,000 sheriff’s departments across the United States is an ambitious project.

“The courts generally don’t want to intervene in the professional judgment of a sheriff. Some courts have ruled that when security is a concern, safety should override a religious practice. Other courts have ruled in favor of Muslim women who want to wear hijab,” said Khalili.


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  • The__Bobster

    I can see a prison escape based on a hijab swap. I mean, how can you tell one Grossy from another?


  • IstvanIN

    Prison is punishment by loss of freedom. Loss of freedom means losing the right to wear what you want when you want. End of story.

  • I Slam Islam

    In a country where Jewish military chaplains are forbidden to wear yarmulkes while on duty, this is really going beyond the pale.

  • David Ashton

    You could offer a quid pro quo: Islamic penalties….!

  • When I was in prison, we didn’t have the right to wear what we wanted. If a copchick had tried wearing a face mask in general population, we’d have tuned her up.

  • GeneticsareDestiny

    “However, she “was held down on the floor by two male deputy sheriffs, and a female removed the scarf. She wasn’t given her scarf back until she left the jail. She had to appear in front of a judge uncovered. She was admitted to a hospital because of the trauma.”

    Oh, you poor baby. What hospital in its right mind would admit a woman for “trauma” stemming from not being allowed to wear a hijab? She’s just looking for attention, and perhaps a nice payout from a future lawsuit.

    • Freey’all

      Or to make a symbolic issue for her people’s ’cause.’ These women hide behind their ‘religion/culture’ but have no problem stashing guns and bombs behind their burkhas. A friend in the military tells me the young women are the biggest threat for suicide bombing because as women they know they’ll be less intimidating and suspicious.

      • gemjunior

        Stupid bitches. They’re doing it for nothing too – they don’t get 72 virgins when they get to heaven. And they aren’t worshipped after death by their families for “shaheed” or martyrdom or whatever part of blowing themselves up is so admirable….

    • She was admitted to a hospital because of the trauma
      The muzzies wasted no time learning the ways of the other aggrieved groups ….

  • MikeS

    The Council on American-Islamic Relations needs to go the way of “free speech” in Islamic countries. Also, if the inmates have a problem with the dress code they can take it up with the hard, cold floor. There is to be no more catering to and the coddling of these filthy, disgusting, barbaric, ignorant, useless, worthless, primitive, bipedal parasites. They are to human progress and development what Kryptonite is to Superman.

  • borogirl54

    What about the face veil, do they have the right to wear that too?

  • Bill

    I hope they use them to hang themselves with.

  • bigone4u

    The scarf could be used to strangle a nonmuzzie in jail. As far as booking procedures, the picture needs to be uniform across prisoners for identification purposes. What we have here is a typical muzzie engaging in TMB (Typical Muzzie Behavior).

  • PesachPatriot

    Gee whiz, if you want to wear full tusken raider garb just keep yourself out of prison…it isn’t that hard….In american prison you aren’t allowed to wear headscarves….in arab prisons in the middle east you get beaten and tortured on a daily or weekly basis while eating a diet of moldy bread and water….

  • Bon, From the Land of Babble

    Islam is only trying to make over the world as it should be — and was in the 12th century!!


  • Bon, From the Land of Babble

    Hijab doesn’t impede the identity of women.

    Of course not. We should all embrace it!!


    • bigone4u

      Had to click “see more” to reveal the wife transporter. Clever, but true.

  • bigone4u

    During my last few years teaching I began to encounter many muzzies among the students. They tend to be highly volatile, the females especially. The turks, perhaps because of their exposure to the West, are calmer and more cooperative. That a muzzie female would make all sorts of outrageous demand does not surprise me in the least. One of them in my class was making all sorts of demands for special treatment, the details of which I’ve forgotten. I know that she went to the department head and got no satisfaction, so ended up permanently disgruntled. Why are these middle easterners so clearly and so often disgruntled about everything? What is the mindset? I don’t know. Just don’t want them around.

    • David Ashton

      I had a Muslim girl tell me: “You shouldn’t be teaching me because you are a man.” Then a Sikh girl created a fuss because she didn’t want to sit near a Muslim. Years ago – ten times worse now in “England”. Reductio ad multiculturum.

      Turkey almost alone “intolerantly” managed to create some sort of “tolerant” Islam, banning the veil, but it has not lasted well, and of course we still face Turkish entry into the “European”.

      • MBlanc46

        Secularism is on the ropes in Turkey. If admission to the EU is denied, as I think it will be, the descent into Islamism will accelerate.

      • A muslim male once told a lady friend of mine “But you are a woman.” I yanked him out of my friend’s seat and threw him down the stairs. I didn’t get to kill him because she said “Please stop.”

        What I wanted to do was kill him in half, but I did tell that “THING” that the next time he saw me or her, he would have to run away.

  • MBlanc46

    They’ll win in the end. First Amendment.

  • why are they in jail in the first place if they pretend to be so religious ?

  • OlderWoman

    Any way to insult their murderous ‘religion’ is fine by me. Their mode of dress is ridiculous. British children call them ‘letter box ladies’. Can you imagine what they smell like when it’s hot outside? Bet they’re hygienically challenged.

  • mobilebay

    There seems to be a race to see who our leaders will surrender to first- the illegals or the muslims.

  • Angry White Woman

    They want the right to wear a tent in American jails? Oh well then, try them Muzzie style–guilty until proven innocent. Then punish them Muzzie style–bury them up to the neck (wearing their tent, of course, wouldn’t want to offend their religion) and stone them to death. End of problem.