Justice Minister criticised over hijab issue
The Police Directorate’s decision to permit Muslim women to wear hijab with the Norwegian police uniform has sparked a heated public discussion which has put Justice Minister Knut Storberget under fire.
Spokespersons from the political opposition a well as representatives from his own Labour Party have voiced their opposition to allowing the hijab to be worn with the police uniform. They claim that the police uniform should remain neutral, free from religious and/or political symbols. This is also a view strongly expressed by the Police Officers’ Union.
Last week the Justice Department stated that they accepted the Police Directorate’s decision, but this week, after the heated protests began to surface, Justice Minister Storberget said he would examine the issue more thoroughly, and invited the Police Directorate to submit concrete proposals as to how a hijab could be integrated into the Norwegian Police uniform. This has further increased the criticism of the way the issue has been handled by the Justice Department.