Muslim Employee Files Complaint Against Disneyland
Walt Disney's theme park division, no stranger to controversy despite its "Happiest Place on Earth" motto, is embroiled in a new one as a Muslim woman, Imane Boudial, has accused Disneyland management of sending her home after refusing to allow her to wear a hijab during her work as a hostess at the Storyteller Cafe at Disneyland's Grand Californian Hotel & Spa in Anaheim. On Wednesday she filed a complaint with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission after management refused to allow her to wear the headscarf, claiming that it didn't jibe with the restaurant's Chip 'n' Dale theme. Disneyland officials said that they had offered her a job working "backstage" while they attempted to work out a compromise. They said that they had even designed a scarf to wear that would blend with her costume but that it had not yet been delivered. Boudial, who is from Morocco, told reporters on Wednesday that she had only learned that she had the right to wear the scarf while studying to become an American citizen. (She recently passed the citizenship test.) When Disneyland Paris opened in 1992, France's labor unions mounted an unsuccessful protest over the theme park's appearance code.