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Difficulty of getting a job for Muslim women in the UK

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  • Difficulty of getting a job for Muslim women in the UK

    Salam,
    I am a muslim girl who is currently finding it hard to get a job. I easily get to the interview stages of the jobs that I apply for, and when it comes to the interview stage,
    for some reason I never get the job. I don't know what it is but it could be possible that I never get a job because of wearing the hijab as I wear the full hijab and abaya. Once I applied for a job in a retail store that sells clothes, upon my arrival the interviewer gave me this surprised look, and when they were interviewing me they talked about my hijab and kept on going about what color I should wear if I ever worked for them. I knew that they didn't like the fact that I wore the hijab. Have any of you went through a similar experience to this?

  • #2
    Re: Difficulty of getting a job for Muslim women in the UK

    wasalam,

    strange i see plenty of muslimahs working in retail. It is normal for a retail store to ask you about what you would wear if you worked for them.

    If they didn't like it at all, they would not ask you which color would suit their brand.

    And maybe it is just your experience. Allahu alem
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    • #3
      Difficulty of getting a job for Muslim women in the UK

      :wswrwb:

      I certainly did and can relate to your experiences.

      My accent has been described as being posh- no hint of slang and very crisp. As a result, the telephone interviews were fine and they seemed really keen. As soon as they saw a hijabi abaya wearing sister clad in black, they were shocked. I could see the initial 'what the heck?!' in their eyes before they put on their facade. Needless to say, those interviews went nowhere.

      Alhamdulillah, I persevered and now work for a Muslim organisation in a Muslim area with Muslim people.

      There were times when I nearly gave up and wanted to just go to another country permanently but Allah instilled in me the strength to continue.

      Carry on making du'a, wake up for tahajjud regularly and ask Allah to grant you a job that will be good for your deen, your life and your affairs. I pray that you find a good job soon ameen : )
      ⚔ Even in death may you be triumphant ⚔
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      • #4
        Re: Difficulty of getting a job for Muslim women in the UK

        What kind of jobs are you applying for? In retail, I think they're more shallow than in other sectors. However, I have seen normal hijabis work in Primark.

        Sometimes I've seen some hijabis work in boots/John Lewis etc. but they're usually the type who wear tons of makeup.

        Don't worry about what employer thinks of hijab. You don't want to work for someone who can't respect your religion anyway.

        And remember, Allah (swt) is the provider. Watch this:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fsybaOAL-qo

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        • #5
          Re: Difficulty of getting a job for Muslim women in the UK

          Never had an issue, black clad and all, Alhumdulillah. And worked in the healthcare retail environment. Allah knows best.

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          • #6
            Re: Difficulty of getting a job for Muslim women in the UK

            Mainly retail and call centers

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            • #7
              Re: Difficulty of getting a job for Muslim women in the UK

              I have had a few issues but then you don't want to work at places like that anyway.

              In terms of uniform they will always ask you how you will adapt to meet their uniform

              I guess it dépends on which area you live in...in London its common to see sisters in hijab/jilbab in department stores/boots/fashion retailers..not only 'make up wearing hijabis'

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              • #8
                Re: Difficulty of getting a job for Muslim women in the UK

                I suggest you wear a smart long skirt, smart loose top and a smart jacket and maybe kohl, so that you look professional when turning up for the interview. That way you're not compromising your modesty as these items of clothing will still give you the same level of coverage, but also it will leave a good impression. I feel that the abaya is far too casual for an interview and so that may be the reason why you're not getting offers.

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                • #9
                  Re: Difficulty of getting a job for Muslim women in the UK

                  Originally posted by Lamp View Post
                  I suggest you wear a smart long skirt, smart loose top and a smart jacket and maybe kohl, so that you look professional when turning up for the interview. That way you're not compromising your modesty as these items of clothing will still give you the same level of coverage, but also it will leave a good impression. I feel that the abaya is far too casual for an interview and so that may be the reason why you're not getting offers.
                  Just compromising your Islam instead. The abaya does not come on and off like a light switch when we feel like it. Perhaps this is the deception of Shaiytan in order to make people lose themselves.

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                  • #10
                    Re: Difficulty of getting a job for Muslim women in the UK

                    I'm sorry that problem is even now present, but i think that people have to overtake their ignorance and face the fact that all we, are world citizens. and they have to know that muslim girls work with their head like the christians. I pray allah sophanaho wa taala to help you find a work soon.

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                    • #11
                      Re: Difficulty of getting a job for Muslim women in the UK

                      Much easier to get job online sometimes, try?

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                      • #12
                        Re: Difficulty of getting a job for Muslim women in the UK

                        Originally posted by Nawar View Post
                        Just compromising your Islam instead. The abaya does not come on and off like a light switch when we feel like it. Perhaps this is the deception of Shaiytan in order to make people lose themselves.
                        An abaya is not necessary to cover yourself properly in the way that has been ordained by Allah, in fact, many abayas produced today are doing exactly the opposite of the original intended purpose. Wearing LONG, LOOSE smart clothing will not only cover her in the way a woman should be covered, but also give the air of professionalism that employers are looking for during the interview. Also, nice job of taking my comment and completely twisting it.

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                        • #13
                          Re: Difficulty of getting a job for Muslim women in the UK

                          Originally posted by Lamp View Post
                          An abaya is not necessary to cover yourself properly in the way that has been ordained by Allah, in fact, many abayas produced today are doing exactly the opposite of the original intended purpose. Wearing LONG, LOOSE smart clothing will not only cover her in the way a woman should be covered, but also give the air of professionalism that employers are looking for during the interview. Also, nice job of taking my comment and completely twisting it.
                          No, that is not the consensus among our Scholars, perhaps your should revise what has been ordained by Allah (swt) and the example of our pious predecessors (rdn).

                          Abaya that do the opposite of what was intended, are not abaya, that comment is irrelevant.

                          You can get 'smart' abaya, perhaps that would be a more wise suggestion.

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                          • #14
                            Re: Difficulty of getting a job for Muslim women in the UK

                            Nawar is right, the abaya/jilbab is the proper way to conform to Islamic dress standards.

                            As someone else has mentioned, I think a lot can depend on whereabouts you live. When I was in my teens, it was pretty much unheard of to see a covered sister working in retail in the town centre even though there are lots of Muslims living here. I still applied for tons of jobs, only got a few interviews but eventually alhamdullilah one place was successful and I was working at the checkout of a local supermarket. One by one, within a few years, it's now the norm to see sisters with their heads covered working in retail stores, though the abaya is still relatively uncommon probably cos' of uniform requirements and a few years later when I decided to wear the jilbab, I just found it easier to work in call centres as they tend to have a more relaxed uniform policy.

                            Where I live, there are a lot of Muslims, nowadays it's not unusual to see women working in the town centre wearing headscarves etc and in some local workplaces I have seen sisters wear jilbab and in one call centre a colleague was even wearing niqab. Having said that, I think in a different town or even in a different neighbourhood, where there are fewer Muslims and people aren't as accustomed to seeing covered sisters, interviewers/employers could feel quite awkward about this sort of thing. I think you should just be persistent and keep trying. Some if not most employers will be prejudiced or take issue with it (even if they don't admit it) but eventually someone out there will have an open mind inshaAllah just keep trying and don't allow yourself to get disheartened when you're turned down it happens to so many intelligent well qualified people- these days with the recession even non Muslims with good qualifications are finding it hard to get jobs so it might not be anything personal even.
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