Most of the incidents happened at police control points, job interviews, and when looking to rent or buy accommodation.
Rabat – According to a survey by the French Institute of Public Opinion (IFOP), 42% of Muslims in France have experienced religious discrimination at least once in their lives.
The survey found that 60% of women wearing a headscarf were subject to discrimination, while 37% of them have been a victim to verbal harassment or defamatory insults. The study, however, revealed that 44% of Muslim women who do not wear headscarves found themselves in similar situations.
The survey found that13% of incidents of religious discrimination happened at police control points, while, 17% happened at job interviews. A further 14 % of incidents occurred while the victims were looking to rent or buy accommodation.
Muslims aged between 30 and 40 years are more vulnerable to discrimination, with an average of 46% of women and 38% of men experiencing religious discrimination.
The IFOP conducted the study from August 26 to September 18, based on a sample of 1007 Muslims aged 15 and above.
Discrimination and racism are not centered only on Muslims but also affect non-Muslim communities.
The IFOP pointed out that one Muslim in four (24%) was exposed to verbal aggression during their lifetime, compared to 9% among non-Muslims. In addition, 7% of Muslims were physically attacked, compared to 3% of non-Muslims.
In France over the last five years, approximately 40% of Muslims have been the subject of racist behavior, compared to 17% among non-Muslims. Around 16% of the discrimination cases were religiously motivated, and 15% due to the skin color were racial.
On October 11, Julien Odoul, a member of France’s National Rally (RN), asked a Muslim woman to remove her hijab while she was accompanying her son and his class on a school trip to explore the mission of the democratic assembly.
Odoul and his colleagues asked Marie Guite Dufay, the President of the Regional Council, to have the woman either remove her hijab or leave the meeting.
Dufay, however, replied that she can only intervene when someone exhibits disruptive or offensive behavior, reported Le Bien Public.
The Muslim woman subsequently left the room with her son after the argument. Following the event, pictures of the son crying after witnessing the discrimination his mother had experienced were widely shared on social media.
Public figures and officials strongly criticized Odoul for the racist move.