Hijabi Anchor Files a Lawsuit Against US-Based TV Channel Over 'Discrimination'

Published May 12th, 2020 - 09:58 GMT
 Hijabi Anchor Files a Lawsuit Against US-Based TV Channel Over 'Discrimination'
Hamra was asked if she'd be willing to wear a wig instead of the headscarf to secure a spot at the pilot test. (Twitter: @alurdunyya)

A Jordanian journalist and show host has reportedly filed a lawsuit against US-based public Arabic-language news channel; over being denied taking part in a pilot anchor test, citing her Hijab as the main reason.

The lawsuit is backed with voice recordings that document 2018 conversations between Raeda Hamra, who currently works for US government-owned Radio "Sawa" and several "high-ranking" officials at Al-Hurra TV channel, including the director at that time, her national Nart Buran.

According to a report published by Al-Quds Al-Arabi, recordings clearly depict "mocking and bullying" comments made by several men working for Al-Hurra TV, targeting her Islamic attire, before her request to apply for an anchor job was rejected.

The report details two instances in which Hamra was asked if she'd be willing to wear a wig instead of the headscarf to secure a spot at the pilot test. Another Arab worker for the channel reportedly advised her not to approach the cafeteria while wearing her Hijab so "she's not mistaken for a terrorist who could blow her self up."

Translation: "An editor in chief of the Washington-based Al-Hurra channel told her that the appearance of a veiled woman meant "the success of the Islamic ideology." A journalist from Al Hurra Iraq demanded that she wore a wig. Others asked her if she was ready to "take her veil off in front of the screen." These are some of the details of the Virginia lawsuit filed against Al-Hurra channel, and it includes"audio recordings."

Additionally, the lawsuit highlights that the HR department had pledged to investigate her complaints but "never really took action". 


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