Sikhs Pilot Anti-Bias Bill in New York City

November 18, 2005

Source: Rediff

On November 18, 2005 Rediff reported, "Sikhs in New York [City], along with several other community organizations, have played a role in piloting an anti-bias bill in the City Council. The first hearing of the Int. 577, as the Uniformed Agency Anti-Discrimination bill is known, was held on Thursday. A news conference was also held on the occasion and David I. Weprin, a Democratic party city council member, was present at the hearing and addressed the news conference... Weprin is head of the council's finance committee. The bill drafted by the Sikh Coalition seeks to amend the city's administrative code, which mandates that its employees comply with a uniform code. That code forces employees [to] forgo their religious practices. Amric Singh Rathour, who won an anti-bias legal case, was also present at the meeting. Rathour, a traffic cop in the New York Police Department, had filed a federal lawsuit against the department after he was fired for refusing to remove his turban... 'I was delighted to win my lawsuit, but I hope no New Yorker has to go to court again to serve his or her city,' [Rathour] said. Brijinder Singh Gill, a former transit authority official, quit immediately after the lawsuit was filed. 'My supervisor tried to physically place a Transit Authority logo on my turban,' said Gill, adding, 'I never felt so humiliated.' Other Sikh and Muslim employees had also faced discrimination by some city agencies."