Police Scotland Approves Hijab for Officers On Duty

Police Scotland announced this week that it would officially incorporate the hijab as an optional part of its uniform for patrol officers.

Previously, the traditional Muslim headscarf for women could be worn by police officers with approval from senior staff. The new regulations allow for the hijab to be worn across the board.

“I am delighted to make this announcement and welcome the support from both the Muslim community, and the wider community, as well as police officers and staff,” said Police Scotland Chief Constable Phil Gormley.

“Like many other employers, especially in the public sector, we are working towards ensuring our service is representative of the communities we serve,” he continued. “I hope that this addition to our uniform options will contribute to making our staff mix more diverse and adds to the life skills, experiences and personal qualities that our officers and staff bring to policing the communities of Scotland.”

The policy change will not affect the rest of officers’ uniforms, including the ubiquitous black shirts, trousers, and most popular Magnum Stealth uniform boots. The London Metropolitan Police enacted similar measures for the hijab more than a decade ago, making it the first department in Great Britain to do so.

The announcement is likely part of an initiative to encourage more minorities to apply to Police Scotland. The goal to employ at least four percent black, minority, and ethnic workers across all departments has been hampered by an application rate of only 2.6% over the past year.

“No doubt this will encourage more women from Muslim and minority ethnic backgrounds to join Police Scotland,” said Scottish Police Muslim Association chairman Fahad Bashir.

“This is a positive step in the right direction,” he continued, “and I am delighted that Police Scotland is taking productive steps in order to ensure that our organisation is seen to be inclusive and represents the diverse communities that we serve across Scotland.”

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