Muslim Teens Lose Appeal, Must Shake Female Teacher’s Hand

Jason Hopkins
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Posted: Sep 22, 2016 1:30 PM
Muslim Teens Lose Appeal, Must Shake Female Teacher’s Hand

It is common practice in Swiss schools that students shake their teachers’ hands at the beginning and end of each day. Two Muslim teen brothers created an uproar in April when they refused, citing their religion, to shake the hands of their female teachers.

At first, school officials attempted to reach a “compromise” with Amer Salhani and his older brother by allowing them to refuse to shake any teacher's hand – be it male or female. However, this decision was met with huge backlash in Switzerland and the international community.

The decision to accommodate was eventually rescinded and now the school says it is within reason to require Swiss students to shake their teachers’ hands when requested. The region’s education authority came to the conclusion that respect for equality between males and females outweighed that of the students’ religious accommodations.

Any disregard for the rule can be met with a possible monetary fine.

Amer’s older brother ultimately left, but Amer is still a student at the school in the small Swiss town of Therwil and he's reportedly still refusing to show respect to his female authorities by giving them a mere handshake.