News

The lunacy of Islam #15,112 (or thereabouts): Gender apartheid to be enforced in Saudi stores

STORES in Saudi Arabia that employ both men and women have been ordered to erect barriers to separate their employees.

According to this report, the authorities have stipulated that the barriers must be no lower than 1.6 metres if they are to effectively achieve gender apartheid.

The order was issued by Labour Minister Adel Faqih and was verified by Abdullatif al-Sheikh, the head of the Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice, commonly known as “Mutawa”or religious police.

Last December, the head of the religious police accused the labour ministry of failing to provide safe working environments for women in the country, saying many had complained of harassment.

Fully-veiled Saudi women shop at a lingerie store in the Saudi Red Sea port of Jeddah. Photo: AFP Fully-veiled Saudi women shop at a lingerie store in the Saudi Red Sea port of Jeddah. Photo: AFP

Fully-veiled Saudi women shop at a lingerie store in the Saudi Red Sea port of Jeddah. Photo: AFP

In June 2011, Saudi Arabia required lingerie shops to replace their salesmen, mostly of Asian origin, with Saudi saleswomen. This directive was later extended to cosmetic outlets after women complained that they feel uncomfortable buying personal items from males.

The labour ministry said the decision to employ women in lingerie shops should create some 44,000 jobs for Saudi women. The unemployment rate among women stands at 30 percent according to official figures.

Hat tip: BarrieJohn

30 Responses to “The lunacy of Islam #15,112 (or thereabouts): Gender apartheid to be enforced in Saudi stores”

  1. Ivan says:

    On a brighter note, according to this amusing piece in The Economist, it seems that ordinary Saudis are taking to Twitter and fighting back after the religious police raided and closed down a display featuring dinosaurs:

    http://goo.gl/E2xLf

  2. Brian Jordan says:

    Note the name of the dinosaur haters:

    auxiliary police force familiarly known to Saudis as the Hayaa

    Clearly a contraction of Harun Yahya and the motive is creationist. Yahya not having quite understood his mate Ken Ham’s argument (like everything else) – Ken loves dinos.

    AS for sending a message to the Stone Age – surely that’s where the Saudis are already.

  3. […] Saudi Arabian morality police have decreed that male and female co-workers shall be separated by a 5′-3″ […]

  4. Matt Westwood says:

    If it increases employment for Saudi women it can’t help but be a *good* thing. It has been said that if change is going to come in Saudi then it will come from the surprisingly (and, to Saudi’s, disturbing – were they to be aware of it) highly sophisticated level of political, technical and social awareness of their female population.

  5. Trevor Blake says:

    The same story, eleven years ago…

    http://now.org/nnt/summer-2002/gender.html

    … suggesting that the work of secularists is not complete.

  6. jay says:

    Since a French court has ordered twitter to ‘find a way ‘ to quickly identify posters of offensive material to the government, the Saudi police will have leverage to go after those dinosaur lovers.

    Thank you France

  7. RabbitOnAStick says:

    This is absolutely no surprise at all.

  8. barriejohn says:

    I see that the faithful are claiming that The Economist is making up that story about the dinosaur exhibition!

    I living in saudi arabia, see and watch more than reporter who wrote this article. This committe is necessary to make live more safe and protection. Most of saudi people supporte the presence of that committe because they feel safely with it. In conclotion, if you don’t no the real story about something, please try to be indifferent, transparent and impartial

    No doubt this is all fiction as well:

    http://muttawa.blogspot.in/

    What about Saudi Arabia? In those 400 posts, you will find the full spectrum of institutionalized insanity that the House of Saud and their friends with long beards have created. If you start back at post number 1 tomorrow, and read one every day, then you’ll end up back here some time around July 2007. And the sad thing is, most of them will still be as relevant then as they are now. OK, the now-the-terrorists-are-surrounded-oops-they-got-away saga is over. Also, muslims worldwide will still be getting offended about something, not necessarily cartoons. But overall, I’m afraid, Saudi Arabia won’t have changed. So I would just end up trying to say the same-old same-old, but in different ways.

  9. remigius says:

    Yeah, walls work. But couldn’t they just train muslim men not to behave like sex-crazed howler monkeys.

  10. barriejohn says:

    What would Mrs Slocombe have said? (No references to her pussy, please!)

  11. ZombieHunter says:

    As much as I hate being dragged around clothes and shoes shops by women I hate religious nut enforced gender zones even more.

  12. barriejohn says:

    “Are you free, Mr Humphreys?”

    “No, I’m not. There’s a bloody great wall here, and I can’t get my leg over!”

  13. T says:

    Saudi sponsors global Islamic fundamentalism. That’s what we really need to be worried about.

  14. Daz says:

    T

    Yeah, but they have oil and they’re willing to sell it to the US and Europe, so they’re a friendly, modern, forward looking, civilised country! </cynicism>

  15. barriejohn says:

    T: There are references to that in Ivan’s and my links above, but you can’t cover all bases in every comment or even every thread. We need to stand shoulder to shoulder with those who are being oppressed wherever they are.

  16. barriejohn says:

    AgentCormac: I will ignore anyone who merely quotes “scripture” in defence of their views!

  17. remigius says:

    OT, but relevant. On Ch4 tonight at 10.30pm. A special report on child sexual abuse in London’s orthodox Jewish community.

    http://www.channel4.com/programmes/dispatches/episode-guide/series-122/episode-1

  18. Stonyground says:

    Sorry to be OT but our old friend MaryD has put in an appearance at Heresy Corner.

    http://heresycorner.blogspot.com/2013/01/free-speech-internet-and-legacy-of-1689.html

    For some strange reason, the host there likes to have guest posts written by homophobic vicars with a persecution complex. It does give the regulars the opportunity to give the guest a jolly good hiding.

    My post accused MaryD of being a self loathing closet case. It certainly appears that she is trawling the internet looking for any mention of gay rights so that she can post the exact same piece of anti-gay drivel that she has posted here.

  19. OurSally says:

    But, thinking about it, it’s the thin end of the wedge. Saudi women get to buy their own clothes! They get to go to the shops and choose them and try them on! Women get to work in the shops! Give them 20 years and they’ll be driving cars.

  20. John A says:

    This report is both sad and makes me feel quite sad on so many different levels. However, I’ve got over that now and am left wondering, why 1.6 metres? ‘…the authorities have stipulated that the barriers must be no lower than 1.6 metres if they are to effectively achieve gender apartheid.’ Okay, why did they decide that 1.6 was the optimum height, not 1.5 or 2metres but 1.6! Was there research done into this or was there divine inspiration?

  21. RabbitOnAStick says:

    @ John A

    knowing the Saudis they would have formed a Committee. Then several Sub-Committess to investigate. They would have engaged and appointed all manner of experts. All at huge fees.

    Then those at the most senior levels involved in the Committee’s and Sub-Committes would have travelled to many shopping places in the western world to test, observe, report and consider. Harrods. Macy’s. Bloomingdales. Fortnum & Masons. Sainsbury’s. Seven/11.
    They would have travelled the globe : Cities like Paris London New York Singapore Dubai Milton Keynes. All shopping mecca’s.

    Then they would have returned. And got some poor little sub-continent carpenter make a screen whatever size he felt looked good.

  22. John A says:

    ROAS: Thank you for that; all is clear now. They do like their jaunts out of SA, allegedly so that they can stop off in Bahrain where they do what they can’t back home.

  23. Stephen Mynett says:

    “They do like their jaunts out of SA, allegedly so that they can stop off in Bahrain where they do what they can’t back home.”

    John A, a friend of mine is a flight attendant with BA, she says the most common request in Business class and First, as soon as they have taken off, is for a Scotch but could she serve it in a normal tea cup.

  24. T says:

    Barriiejohn – keep your replies to yourself. You seem to have too much time on your hands.

  25. barriejohn says:

    T: Look who’s talking!

  26. T says:

    Typing actually.