Girl Banned From Wearing Cross at School

Country: United Kingdom

Date of incident: January 10, 2007

A British schoolgirl has been barred from wearing a crucifix necklace in class, the Daily Mail reported.

Samantha Devine, a 13-year-old Roman Catholic, was told by teachers in Gillingham, south-east England, that it wearing her cross at school breached health and safety rules, the paper added. Her family reportedly says they will fight the decision and has accused the school of discriminating against Christians because Sikh and Muslim pupils can wear religious symbols. The case echoes that of British Airways employee Nadia Eweida, who was suspended in October for failing to remove her necklace or hide it under clothing in accordance with company policy. The girl has pledged to keep wearing the cross when school restarts after the Christmas holiday. "I am proud of my religion and it is my right to wear a cross around my neck. I can't understand why the school thinks a tiny crucifix on a thin silver necklace is a health and safety hazard,'' she told the Mail. Sources: Daily Mail:,23599,21053059-38200,00.html