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Muslim Employee Fired by Abercrombie & Fitch for Wearing Head Scarf

The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) reported on Feb 24th that a Muslim employee of Abercrombie & Fitch had filed a discrimination suit against the company, saying she was fired because she was wearing a head scarf in accordance with her religion. On Feb 25th, CAIR received a threatening e-mail that has been reported to the FBI. Click Read More to get more information on this story.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

CAIR: Fired Calif. Muslim Abercrombie Employee Threatened
E-mail says 'cut off her head...rap [sic] her head and her carcass in pig skin'

Take Positive ACTION on This Case.

(SANTA CLARA, CA, 2/25/10) -- The San Francisco Bay Area chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-SFBA) said today that it has asked the FBI to investigate an apparent death threat against a Muslim employee who was allegedly fired from an Abercrombie & Fitch outlet in San Mateo, Calif., because she refused to remove her Islamic head scarf (hijab).

On Tuesday, CAIR-SFBA filed an Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) complaint on behalf of the Muslim worker who was fired earlier this week when she allegedly refused a demand by company managers to remove her scarf in public.

CAIR Video: Calif. Muslim Fired for Wearing Headscarf (KGO)
CAIR Video: Calif. Woman Says She Was Fired Over Headscarf (CBS)
Store Fired Her for Wearing Muslim Scarf, Woman Says (CC Times)
Muslim Woman Files Complaint Over Head-Scarf Firing (SF Chron)

After announcing the EEOC filing against Abercrombie & Fitch, CAIR staff in Washington, D.C., and California received an e-mail threat that stated in part:

"What Abercrombie & Fitch should do is pour pig grease on the floor every place this rag head muslim [sic] walks...Then have I.C.E. revoke her work visa and citizenship papers, arrest her on the spot upon leaving Fitch and deport her back to muslin [sic] land immediately. If she refuses to leave the country, cut off her head just like the muslim [sic] rag heads did to Philip Berg...Take her head and her carcass out to a pig farm in the valley and rap [sic] her head and her carcass in pig skin and bury them both."

Abercrombie & Fitch has so far declined to comment on the firing or the threat to its former employee.

"As we have seen in the past, intolerance can and does lead to violence," said CAIR-SFBA Programs and Outreach Director Zahra Billoo. "We again ask Abercrombie & Fitch to follow the law and its own stated policies on diversity and inclusion."

Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits employers from discriminating against individuals because of their religion in hiring, firing and other terms and conditions of employment. The act also requires employers to reasonably accommodate the religious practices of an employee, unless doing so would create an "undue hardship" for the employer.

CAIR's Oklahoma chapter filed a similar complaint against Abercrombie & Fitch in 2008 on behalf of a Muslim applicant in that state who was denied a job because of her hijab. In September of 2009, the EEOC filed a discrimination suit against the company on behalf of the Muslim applicant.

SEE: Teen Accuses Clothing Store of Discrimination (Video)
Abercrombie & Fitch Sued by EEOC for Religious Discrimination Against Muslim Teen Applicant

CAIR offers a booklet called "An Employer's Guide to Islamic Religious Practices" to help corporate managers gain a better understanding of Islam and Muslims.

CAIR is America's largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance the understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.

- END -

CONTACT: CAIR-SFBA Programs and Outreach Director Zahra Billoo, 626-252-0885, E-Mail: zbilloo@cair.com; CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-488-8787 or 202-744-7726, E-Mail: ihooper@cair.com; CAIR Communications Coordinator Amina Rubin, 202-488-8787, 202-341-4171, E-Mail: arubin@cair.com

IMMEDIATE ACTION REQUESTED: (As always, be POLITE and RESPECTFUL.) - TOP

CONTACT Abercrombie & Fitch to express your concerns about this apparent violation of federal civil rights law and of company commitments to diversity and inclusion.

CONTACT:

Mr. Mike Jeffries
CEO
Abercrombie & Fitch
6301 Fitch Path
New Albany, OH 43054

Tel: 614-283-6500 (Ask for the public relations department.)
Fax: 614-283-6710
E-Mail: investor_relations@abercrombie.com, Iska_Hain@abercrombie.com
Copy to: info@cair.com



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