Tory MP’s refusal to meet a burka-clad Muslim woman constituent is discriminatory
Following on from the story that it could be illegal for Tory MP Philip Hollobone to refuse to meet constituents wearing the burka or niqab (which you can read here), the Guardian has a firm legal opinion on the matter.
James Welch, a lawyer for civil rights group Liberty, says that if he refuses to meet a Muslim woman wearing the burka, he would be treating her less favourably than people of other religions. That would amount to direct religious discrimination under the UK's 2006 Equality Act.
He would also be indirectly discriminating against her by imposing a condition that has a disproportionate impact on Muslim women compared to those of other faiths. Welch cannot see any grounds on which that could be justified.