Thursday, March 29, 2007

Michigan Woman Sues Judge Who Insisted She Remove Veil To Testify

Alleging that she was denied her free exercise rights and access to the courts because of her religion, a Muslim woman has filed a civil rights complaint in federal district court in Detroit. The AP reported yesterday on the case against against Hamtramck, Michigan small claims court Judge Paul Paruk who, last October, dismissed Ginnnah Muhammad's claim against a car rental company when Muhammad refused to remove her niqab (full face veil) before she testified. (See prior postings 1, 2. ) The judge insisted that he needed to see the plaintiff's face in order to assess her truthfulness. Muhammad says she would have removed her veil for a female judge. Meanwhile the car rental company has now filed a small claims suit against Muhammad and a hearing is set for April 18 before the same judge. Muhammad's attorney will ask the judge to remove himself from the case.