British Police most senior Muslim woman officer 'ostracised even from coffee'

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London, Oct 19 : A British Muslim woman officer responsible for upholding racial and religious diversity within the Metropolitan police claims that she was so marginalised that she was not even allowed to make the coffee.

Yasmin Rehman, 42, the force's director of partnerships and diversity, is taking her bosses to an employment tribunal claiming she was bullied because of her colour and sex, The Times reported.

She says one female detective told her not even to touch her coffee cup because she was Muslim, according to legal documents.

At every turn her colour, religion and sex caused her to be "undermined, marginalised and excluded", she claims.

Her treatment at the hands of her White colleagues became so unbearable she is off work with stress and has considered suicide, she says in documents.

A copy of Rehman's employment tribunal claim, lodged with the tribunal and the force and passed to The Sunday Times, reads: "(A senior detective) stated she did not want the claimant to touch her coffee cup or ever make her coffee.

"This was soon after the July 2005 bombings and (the detective's) reasons for saying this were apparently connected to the bombings."

Her case is the latest in a series of disputes about the treatment of racial minorities within the ranks of Britain's constabularies, and particularly the Met.

Two weeks ago, Jacqui Smith, the Home Secretary, ordered a race review following a decision by Boris Johnson, the London mayor, to launch an inquiry into "racism" concerns voiced by some ethnic officers and staff at the Met.

Tarique Ghaffur, an assistant commissioner, is pursuing his own claim for racial discrimination against the force.

Rehman, who joined the Met in March 2004, is a civilian and the most senior Muslim woman within the force, with a rank equivalent to chief superintendent. One of her main functions is to develop strategies for tackling domestic violence, forced marriage and so-called "honour" crimes.

ANI

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