A Norwegian hair salon owner could face up to six months of jail time for her treatment to one would-be customer in particular. Merete Hodne, who is also a hairdresser, refused to color the hair of a Muslim woman wearing a hijab, an act of discrimination in Norway, the Independent reported Tuesday.
The incident occurred in October 2015 when Malika Bayan visited Hodne’s salon to inquire about the cost of coloring her hair. However, Hodne, 47, told her to leave, RT reported Monday. At the time, the hairdresser defended her actions via Facebook, writing: "I refused to take two hijab-clad ladies in my salon. Do not want evil through the doors where I can decide. Lawful? Maybe not. But we still have freedom of speech?"
Hodne told Bayan that she couldn’t let this totalitarian symbol of “evil” inside of her salon. The business owner was served with a fine of 8,800 krone ($1,328) in April for discrimination but refused to pay it. She is now scheduled to appear in court Thursday in a case which will be a first for Norway. If the court rules against her, Hodne insisted that she would appeal the case all the way up to the European Court of Human Rights.
Speaking to Norway’s Tv2, Hodne compared the hijab to the Nazi swastika and also claimed that to offer Bayan service in her salon would force her to discriminate against male customers. In servicing Bayan she would have to ask the men to leave the establishment because women wearing a hijabs are forbidden from showing their hair in front any man aside from a husband.
During her talk with the news station, Bayan said that Hodne’s treatment was quite disturbing. "Norway is my country," she added. "She talks about how Islam is oppressive to women, but it is she who oppresses me."