A teaching assistant at a Muslim girls’ school has been forced to quit her job after being subjected to a medical examination to prove her gender.
Shifa Patel, who worked at the private Al-Islah Muslim Girls’ School in Blackburn, was made to undergo a medical examination after parents signed a petition demanding she prove her gender and called for her to be sacked.
Patel, who wore a full-length hijab while at work, was subjected to the attack after photos taken of her with short hair and wearing a shirt with trousers were copied from social networking site Facebook and circulated by e-mail.
Despite the headteacher of the school in Lancashire sending a letter to parents reassuring them of Patel’s gender, police had to be called to disperse angry parents who had gathered at the school demanding the assistant was sacked.
The school’s governing body also backed Patel, saying her “unquestionable work ethic and professionalism had never been in doubt”. But Patel still quit her job at the school to stop the abuse.
She told the Daily Mail: “I have irrefutable medical evidence that I’m a woman. The people who have done this to me have hurt me so badly. I will never forgive those who did this to me and spread these lies.”