Law and religion round-up – 11th October

Recognition for Alevis, turbans in the workplace, the Canadian row over niqabs – and a new legal blog

Charity Commission recognises Alevism

The Charity Commission for England and Wales has recognised the British Alevi Foundation (BAF), an umbrella body of 12 Alevi centres in the United Kingdom, as a religious charity. In a decision announced on 5 October the Charity Commission ruled that the BAF and its associated Alevi centres were established for charitable purposes and could promote the Alevi faith in accordance with the beliefs set out in the publication “Alevism” produced by the BAF. So the Alevi community now has a legal recognition in England and Wales that it is denied in Turkey: see, for example, Cumhuriyetçi Eğitim ve Kültür Merkezi Vakfi v Turkey [2014] ECHR 1346 on which we previously posted here. (Hürriyet Daily News is unlikely to have got it wrong; but a search on the charity register reveals that the BAF does not yet have a charity registration number.)

With thanks to Paul de Mello Jr for the lead.

Turbans in the workplace

Further to our notification of the change in the law to permit turban-wearing Sikhs to choose not to wear head protection and to exempt them from legal requirements to wear a safety helmet in the majority of workplaces, the Health and Safety Executive, (HSE), has posted some informative FAQs on its web pages. Continue reading