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BMI told stewardess to wear Muslim robe
by Jon Ungoed-Thomas
A British air stewardess was sacked for refusing to fly to Saudi Arabia after she was ordered to wear a traditional Islamic robe and walk behind male colleagues.
Lisa Ashton, a £15,000-a-year stewardess with BMI, was told that in public areas in Saudi Arabia she was required to wear a black robe, known as an abaya. This covers everything but the face, feet and hands. She was told to follow her male colleagues, irrespective of rank.
Ashton, 37, who was worried about security in the country, refused to fly there, claiming the instructions were discriminatory. She was sacked last April.
"It's not the law that you have to walk behind men in Saudi Arabia, or that you have to wear an abaya, and I'm not going to be treated as a second-class citizen," Ashton said last week.
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