LEXINGTON, Ky. (FOX 56) — The Lexington-Fayette County Detention Center is changing its rules regarding religious clothing.
It comes after a complaint from a Muslim woman who reportedly faced uncomfortable circumstances as she was being booked.
The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) said UK police pulled over a woman on July 17 for driving without headlights and arrested her for alleged late vehicle registration. When taken to the detention center, CAIR said authorities requested she take off her hijab for the booking photo. She asked to do so in private, but that request was denied.
CAIR asked the chief of corrections to review policies, which led to the revision.
The new policy allows people to wear religious clothing, including Islamic hijabs, Sikh turbans, and Jewish kippahs. If the articles need to be removed for security reasons, it will be done in the presence of a same-sex staffer in a private area.
“We don’t want to cause anyone any more stress or anxiety than what they’re already experiencing,” Scott Colvin, director of community corrections, said. “In fact, it’s our job to lower that, and we absolutely are a well-trained, committed staff that is interested in treating people with respect and with dignity. And we’re responsive, and we want them to know that we listen to them.”
Officials said the new policy should be finalized within the next 30 days and will take effect immediately.