Update: Two Zara employees have since been fired. Jean-Jacques Salaun, head of Zara's French stores said: “This type of mentality is unheard of at Zara and there have never been instructions given out to act this way.”
A security guard has been caught on camera refusing to let a woman wearing a hijab enter a Zara store in Paris. In the video, the security guy tells the woman that people whose heads are covered with caps, hats, beanies, hoods and hooded veils can’t come in the store. The woman asks if this is a matter of company policy, and the man replies, “If things change, they’ll change but I don’t make the rules.”
While we don’t know when the video was shot, it was uploaded on November 14, the day after the Paris attacks, when levels of tension and fear would have been high in the capital.
The retailer apologised with the following statement: “We would like to sincerely apologise for what has happened. Our country head in France has personally contacted this customer to apologise for the incident and to express our utter disagreement with such actions, which are completely opposite to the principles of our company. Both the security staff and the store manager have been sanctioned. Once again, we are deeply sorry about this.”
Islamophobia is very real for the Muslim community. Even before the attacks, we reported hate crime on female Muslims in the UK is on the rise. Now, police have publicly said that the number of Islamophobic hate crimes has risen since the terror attacks, which occurred only a matter of days ago. As Dazed writer Ruqaiya Haris wrote: “Instead of alienating Muslim communities, the west should enlist their help in dismantling Isis ideology from a theological standpoint. People in Europe must not pander to the ‘Muslims vs everybody else’ narrative, as this is exactly what Isis so desperately seek.”