Banning women from wearing the burka on the streets of Britain would be a waste of police time, Justice Secretary Jack Straw said today.
He told MPs he did not think police should be instructed to remove the garments from women who wore them for “religious or cultural reasons”. Mr Straw, who has in the past raised concerns about Muslim women wearing the veil, said he would “strongly recommend against a change in the law”.
At Commons question time he said: “All of us may have views about the wearing of the burka, but I do not believe that this is a matter which should be the subject of the criminal law in which we were expecting the police to remove these items of apparel from women who choose for religious or cultural reasons to wear them. That should have no part of the system of law in the United Kingdom.”