A leasing company has hit out at right-wing groups who suggest wearing religious head coverings when behind the wheel should be made illegal in the UK.
Previously, the contentious groups have petitioned the government to ban women from wearing religious headwear while driving as they describe it as ‘highly dangerous’.
But spokesman for leasing company Flexed.co.uk, Mark Hall, has said sufficient motoring law already exists and police should be left to make a judgement on a case-by-case basis.
He said: “The charge of ‘driving without due care and attention’ covers a wide spectrum of sins, and this can easily be applied for wearing clothing related to any religious group.
“Let’s make it clear – this isn’t about what believers in a certain religion wear behind the wheel. Anybody wearing a face covering can fall foul of the law.”
A YouGov poll carried out in 2013 revealed that 61% of people believed the UK should follow France’s lead in banning the burka in public.
Hall added: “As long as eyesight isn’t obstructed, there’s no reason why the veil can’t be worn behind the wheel.
“There’s no such argument for motorcycle riders, and their helmets offer far less peripheral vision than a simple cloth veil.”
The leasing company also identified some confusion over the religious head coverings worn by Muslim women. While many wear a simple headscarf, which poses no issues when behind the wheel, very few actually wear a full burka.
A woman who wears a full-face burka in public, the company points out, would most likely come from a very strict Muslim family – in which case, they’re unlikely to allow an unaccompanied woman to drive a car.
Hall concluded: “People are scared of the unfamiliar, and to see a veiled driver rings alarm bells.
“Calm down. It’s perfectly legal and perfectly safe. Everybody has a right to drive, whatever their background, whatever their religion.”