Fire kommuneansatte er sagt opp i en forstad til Paris, fordi de ikke spiste under ramadan og hadde ansvar for barn på en sommerleir. De to tingene var uforenlige, mente kommunen. Man kunne ikke påregne at de ville kunne ta fullt ut ansvar for barna i alle situasjoner.
All of the workers were employed by the local council in Gennevilliers, a Paris suburb, and were running a sports camp in Port d’Albret, in the Landes region of south west France.
They were formally dismissed earlier this month however when Gennevilliers council officers decided that their ‘lack of nourishment’ between dawn and dusk was putting health and safety at risk.
A Gennevilliers spokesman said: “They did not respect the terms of their contract in a manner that could have endangered the physical safety of the children they were responsible for.
“This lack of nourishment and hydration could have resulted in these employees not being in full possession of the means required to ensure activities at the camp were correctly and safely run, as well as the physical safety of the children in their charge.”
Oppsigelsen har provosert muslimer. De fire saksøker kommunen, det samme gjør en forening av muslimer.
Men kommunen viser til at for noen år siden kom et barn stygt til skade da det ble påkjørt av en person som ikke hadde spist. Dette er helt irrelevant mener de fires advokat.
Man må regne med at ramadan vil by på flere problemer i tiden som kommer. Krav om ytelse og ansvar kommer på tvers av religiøs faste fra soloppgang til solnedgang en hel måned.
The council argues that, three years ago, a Muslim observing Ramadan caused a car accident in which a child was seriously injured.
France is a secular republic which does not officially recognise religious differences, but the Muslims argued that it was up to them what they eat and drank.
All are taking Gennevilliers to an employment court, while France’s Council of the Muslim Faith (CFCM) is preparing to sue them.
Mohand Yanat, a lawyer for the sacked workers, said the safety argument was a cloak for anti-Muslim prejudice.
“How can you judge the capacity of someone to do their job on the basis of their religious observance?” said Mr Yanat.
Abdallah Zekri, a spokesman for the CFCM, said: “Religious freedom is a fundamental right and you cannot in any circumstances ban someone from practising their religion.”
Tensions have been running high in the Muslim community since a burka ban was introduced last year, making it a crime for women to wear veils in public.