The owner of a private residence near Marseille, France, asked a woman to pay 490 euros because the communal pool had to be cleaned after she swam in it wearing a burkini, according to an organisation established to combat Islamaphobia.
United Against Islamaphobia in France (Le Collectif Contre l’Islamophobie en France, CCIF) yesterday (August 2) published an article which details Fadila’s* surprise when a staff member at the residence she was renting with her husband and three children asked everyone to leave the pool while she was swimming.
CCIF (@ccif) 2 août 2017
Fadila explained in the article that the owner later contacted her saying he had received a call from the building’s syndicate claiming woman wearing a burqa had got into the pool in her clothes and when someone asked her to get out she had refused.
“I was stunned,” she said, “because no one had stopped me or said anything at all.”
The owner called Fadila’s husband asking that she refrain from swimming for the rest of their stay.
He also purportedly told the couple that they must foot the bill for the pool being emptied and cleaned and pay damages because it was out of use for two days.
When the husband and wife refused to pay on the grounds that the pool was never closed or emptied, they said the owner took their 490-euro deposit without producing any proof of invoice.
“I was disappointed, shocked, wounded by the fact that someone could be so hypocritical and wicked because of a burkini,” said Fadila.
According to the CCIF, Fadila’s burkini could not have caused a hygiene issue as she was not swimming in her clothes but “garments that are specially adapted for swimming”.
Burkinis are generally made from light fabric that is easy to dry, similar to that used for thin diving wetsuits and professional swimsuits, it continued.
French swimmming pools often prohibit beach swim-wear such as swimming shorts on the grounds that they are unhygienic.
*CCIF changed the first names of those concerned.