The Dutch Senate has approved a law that bans the wearing of “face-covering clothing” in public buildings, including hospitals, schools and government offices, as well as on public transportation.
The ban does not extend to the streets of the Netherlands, the law does authorize police to ask individuals to remove face-covering clothing to establish their identity.
Those found flouting the ban — which includes Islamic veils and robes such as burqas (which cover the entire face) and niqabs (which cover the entire face except for the eyes), as well as balaclavas and full-face helmets — will be subject to a fine of €410.
In a statement, the government, which has not yet said when the law will enter into effect, explained its purpose:
“In a free country like the Netherlands, everyone has the freedom and space to behave and dress as he or she desires. Sometimes, limits can and must be imposed on that freedom. In the case of face-covering clothing, this applies in particular if mutual communication is impeded or safety is jeopardized.
“Mutual communication whereby people can look each other in the face is so important that uniform rules have now been laid down by law. This makes it clear to everyone what is and is not allowed in those situations.”
While we fully understand that people want to live according to the couture that they have been brought up in. When you move to another country because it has something that you want and admire, you probably should work to fit in.
While modest dress, is to be admired, full face covering is not necessary for modesty, and for many women is probably rather oppressive.