The New York City Commission on Human Rights is suing ultra-Orthodox Jewish business owners in Brooklyn because they posted signs calling on customers to dress modestly in their stores.
The commission said the owners, whose businesses are located in an ultra-Orthodox neighborhood, violated human rights law with signs that read: “No shorts, no barefoot, no sleeveless, no low-cut neckline allowed in this store.”
Ultra-Orthodox Jews practice a strict form of Judaism; men, women and older children are expected to wear clothes that cover their arms, legs and necklines.
Clifford Mulqueen, deputy commissioner and general counsel to the Human Rights Commission, told the Haaretz newspaper in Israel that the signs “are pretty specific to women. It seems pretty clear that it’s geared toward women dressing modestly if they choose to come into the store, and that would be discrimination.”
The seven business owners deny the charges.
Marc Stern, associate general counsel at the American Jewish Committee, told Religion News Service that the commission’s suit appears to unfairly single out Hasidic Jews.