For Muslim women life had been getting better. No longer

…. Muslim women are the most economically disadvantaged group in Britain. They are three times more likely than other women to be unemployed or looking for work, and twice as likely to be economically inactive (ie, not looking for work).

…. According to the parliamentary report, “the impact of Islamophobia cannot be underestimated” and there is now a “chill factor” stopping women applying for jobs and promotion. What a blow that must be. All that faith, all that education, for what turns out to be a false promise, a chimera. They face a triple penalty: they are female, of minority background and Muslim.

One recommendation in the report is name-blind recruitment. This would help, but not that much. Women who sound “British” and believe they are, turn up at interviews where visceral hostility comes at them. I have experienced it several times in my own life. I started to apply with just “Brown” as my surname, but then felt the air freeze when I arrived at the interview.

…. However, the report’s authors are completely right when they say the discrimination Muslim women experience “is exacerbated by the pressures that some women feel from parts of their communities to fulfil a more traditional role”. It’s clear that self-segregation is increasing within some communities. Farhat Hashmi, who gained her PhD from Glasgow University, is one of the most influential internet female proselytisers. She orders middle-class women to stay at home and give in to men’s demands. [Yasmin Alibhai-Brown, 20 comments]

[TOP RATED COMMENT 700 votes] Surely it’s up to Muslim women to stand up to their domineering ignorant oppressive fathers brothers and indeed mothers and sisters and do what they need to do? Not easy but then change rarely is.

[2ND 687] Islam is always someone else’s problem.

[3RD 631] My other half used to work at a school where one of the students went off to fight for ISIS. She said that the Asian students were the best and worst pupils there, but across the board many of the boys had an absolutely shocking lack of respect for women.

The problem mainly seemed to be threefold:-

• Several didn’t see the point in trying hard in school because they looked up to others in their local community (primarily Dewsbury) who would drive around in flash cars despite not having a job/legitimate source of income.

• High levels of immigration from Pakistan and the like had seen their neighbourhood become more insular and regressive.

• They seemed to care more about what their Imam thought of them than school. A lot of them went to an Islamic centre for religious teachings on an evening.

[4TH 610] A liberal society is tolerating, and worse encouraging the hopeless places created by modern Islam. It is shameful.

[5TH 584] Yep, I knew it’d be all my fault somehow.

[6TH 472] “both discrimination and internal oppression keep Muslim women in their airless, hopeless places. Governments can tackle the first, but who in a liberal society would dare challenge the second?”

Very good question! And that’s a shame, given that discrimination is pretty obviously not the main reason why Muslims fare so much worse than other similar-looking people of the same ethnic origin. [Guardian Cif] Read more

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