UAB student, employee sent home for wearing headscarf to work

Local News

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) — A UAB student and employee at the University Child Development Center was sent home due to her hairstyle.

On Thursday, 21-year-old Felicia Layton was sent home halfway through her workday because she was told by her supervisor that her headscarf violates the dress code policy, she reports.

Layton, a junior studying kinesiology at UAB, said she was unaware of the policy. She left work that day although she did not agree and was told if she did not fix her hair, she would be terminated.

Later on the same day, she took to Facebook to voice her concern about what happened to her at the daycare center. Since then the post has been shared more than 1000 times with hundreds of comments.

The UAB handbook states employees are expected to dress appropriately in neat, clean clothing but it does not specify how an employee should wear their hair.

“I’m disgusted by what happened and it hurts [that] people don’t see it as a deeper issue,” Layton said.

Although the post is gathering heavy attention, Layton also wants everyone to know she cares a lot about the children at the center and respects their parents. She hopes they are not affected by this ordeal.

Since the initial incident happened, Layton returned to work the following Monday with her hair “fixed” and has a meeting with UAB officials in the coming days.

The following can be attributed to UAB spokeswoman Holly Gainer:
“The UAB handbook states that employees must adhere to dress standards or uniforms that have been established in patient areas or in any other department or unit at UAB. An addendum was made to the Child Development Center’s dress code on July 10 and was sent to all of the center’s employees via email on the same day. The addendum prohibits employees from wearing wraps, scarves, hats, shower caps or other types of coverings, unless the employee is wearing such for religious purposes. Personnel matters are confidential and prohibit the university from discussing specific employees.”

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