Home > Workplace > France > 2001-03-16 - Court of appeal of Paris, Mme C. c/ SA Hamon, n. (...)

2001-03-16 - Court of appeal of Paris, Mme C. c/ SA Hamon, n. 1999-31302

Workplace · France · Dismissal · Dress code

Religious freedom may be limited in the interests of the company

Key facts of the case - A saleswoman was dismissed because she refused to remove the Islamic headscarf she wore at work. She argued that it was not forbidden by the rules of the company and that this dismissal on ground of a religious practice was discriminatory.

Main reasoning of the case - The dismissal was not discriminatory since the employer had authorized the applicant to do the pilgrimage to the Mecca out of the legal vacation and had accepted that she wore a headscarf leaving the neck and the face uncovered.
Furthermore only the employer is entitled to decide of the dress code of the salesmen/women in contact with the customers if this demand is respectful of the public policy and good morals and required by the objective interest of the company. Accordingly, the refusal of the applicant to remove her headscarf is constitutive of a substantial ground of dismissal.