Police unveil hijabs with 'anti-grab' magnetic technology

Max Stephens
·2-min read
Student officer Khadeejah Mansur trialling the new hijab - SWNS
Student officer Khadeejah Mansur trialling the new hijab  - SWNS
Student officer Khadeejah Mansur trialling the new hijab - SWNS

Hijabs with 'anti-grab' magnetic technology have been unveiled by a police force in bid to attract more female recruits.

Leicestershire Police are currently trialling the headwear and hope the garment will be rolled out by the Home Office on a national scale for use by other police forces.

The hijabs are made from a specialised sports material and fastened with magnetic buttons to enable a swift release if the wearer is grabbed.

They are designed to sit comfortably with police-issued headwear such as caps and radio earpieces.

The newly designed religious covering will not only improve the safety of female officers but also encourage more Muslim women to join the force, Leicestershire Police have said.

Watch: A Muslim Teen Was Disqualified from Her Volleyball Match Because of Her Hijab

In 2001 the Metropolitan Police became the first police force to allow officers to wear hijabs as part of an initiative in London to boost recruitment from black and Asian communities.

Detective Constable Yassin Desai, joint chair of Leicestershire Police's Association of Muslim Police (AMP), said: "We have been looking for the right design and the right product for a number of years.

"I have also been talking to other forces in England and Wales and the Home Office about it being a national solution for emergency services and frontline staff.

"It's really important for our Muslim officers who wear the hijab. Operationally, a standard hijab is needed."

Scientists at New Zealand’s Massey University had spent 16 months designing the hijab.

New Zealand Police introduced them into their uniform last November and they are now expected to be rolled out to forces in the UK.

Student Officer Khadeejah Mansur, who joined the force in October is trialling the new-look hijab.

She said: "Wearing the hijab had made me very comfortable and complements my uniform very well, it is comfortable and far from restricting.

"I believe it is important to have it as part of our uniform to make other Muslim females aware that Leicestershire Police caters to all individuals needs especially with our uniform.

"Once fellow Muslim females see myself as a frontline hijab wearing officer I hope it will inspire them to look at a career in policing as there are no restrictions or setbacks."

Watch: South Africa's military lifts ban on headscarves in army