Tuesday, December 27, 2016

City Changes Policy On Arrestees Wearing of Religious Head Coverings

As previously reported, in May a Muslim woman filed suit in federal court against the city of Long Beach, California and its police complaining that her hijab (headscarf) was forcefully removed while she was being booked by police and held overnight in jail.  The Long Beach Press-Telegram reported yesterday that the police have now changed their policy regarding religious headgear.  Last month police chief Robert Luna issued an order providing:
If an arrestee is wearing a religious head covering, employees shall make all reasonable efforts to allow this practice, except where safety and security concerns dictate otherwise.
The jail administrator says this means that the person arrested will be allowed to keep his or her head covering unless there is concern that the person is potentially suicidal and could use the item to harm himself or herself.