Update: Sultaana Freeman License Photo Case in Florida

May 27, 2003

Source: South Florida Sun-Sentinel


On May 27, 2003 the South Florida Sun-Sentinel reported that "nine months after Sultaana Freeman obtained a Florida driver's license that had a photo of her face covered in a veil, she received a letter from the state warning that it would revoke her license unless she returned for a photo with her face uncovered... The 35-year-old Muslim refused, saying that revealing her face would violate her beliefs, and the license was revoked. A judge will begin hearing today her lawsuit that seeks to have her license reinstated. The case pits religious freedom against the state's argument that allowing hidden faces on driver's licenses would put public safety at risk... Freeman's attorney, Howard Marks, who was hired by the American Civil Liberties Union of Florida, said his client believes that taking a photograph of her face would violate the Quran... But Florida's attorneys argue that having a license photo in which the driver's face is readily identifiable is a public safety issue. The veil only reveals Freeman's eyes."