EGMR: Forthcoming judgment on Thursday 26 November 2015 – Ebrahimian v. France (no. 64846/11)

von Dr. Georg Neureither

The applicant, Christiane Ebrahimian, is a French national who was born in 1951 and lives in Paris (France). The case concerns the decision not to renew Ms Ebrahimian’s contract of employment as a hospital social worker, because of her refusal to stop wearing a veil.

Ms Ebrahimian was recruited on a fixed-term contract within the public hospital service as a social worker in the psychiatric department of Nanterre Hospital and Social Care Centre. On 11 December 2000 the Director of Human Resources informed her that her contract would not be renewed, on account of her refusal to remove her headgear and following complaints from patients. The Director of Human Resources sent Ms Ebrahimian a written reminder of the Conseil d’Etat’s opinion of 3 May 2000, to the effect that the principles of freedom of conscience, the secular State and neutrality in public services prevented public officials from enjoying the right to manifest their religious beliefs while discharging their functions, and that wearing a visible symbol of religious affiliation constituted a breach of a public official’s duties ...

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