HC Deb 28 July 1998 vol 317 c108W
Mr. Vaz

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what guidelines have been issued to Customs officials in respect of the treatment of Muslim women wearing veils. [53080]

Mr. Geoffrey Robinson

I have been asked to reply.

Guidance to Customs officials says that, where it is necessary to remove and examine head-dresses, the maximum tact should be exercised where the head-dress is of religious significance. This type of personal search would be conducted by an officer of the same sex as the person to be searched, and would be carried out only where there are reasonable goods to suspect that the person concerned is carrying smuggled goods.