WA Judge Apologizes for Ejecting Muslim Woman from Court

Seattle, WA: The Seattle, Wash., office of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-Seattle has thanked a Tacoma judge who offered an apology to a Muslim woman who was ejected from court for refusing to remove her religiously-mandated headscarf.
CAIR-Seattle also applauded a new policy being formulated to allowing religious exemptions to rules prohibiting head coverings in that state's courtrooms.
The Washington, D.C., based group had intervened on behalf of the woman who was ordered to leave the courtroom of Tacoma Municipal Court Judge David B. Ladenburg on January 25. That incident prompted the decision to alter the head covering policy to allow both religious and medical exemptions.
In a letter to CAIR Legal Director Arsalan Iftikhar, Judge Ladenburg wrote:
"I offer my sincerest apology for any discomfort, embarrassment or humiliation she may have felt as a result of my request. My request was a result of sincere and earnest desire to maintain a policy that would be fair to all individuals. There was never intent to discriminate based on religious preference. I will be glad to offer my apology personally should she so desire."
"We thank all those involved in this incident for their quick and decisive actions in defense of tolerance and religious diversity," said CAIR-Seattle President Rami Al-Kabra. "The new policy will be of benefit not only to Muslims, but to Sikh men wearing turbans, orthodox Jewish men and women wearing yarmulkes or head scarves, Christian women wearing religious head coverings, and people of all other faiths who wear religiously-mandated attire."


Editor: Akhtar M. Faruqui
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