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Woman arrested for wearing hijab sues

DOUGLASVILLE | A Muslim woman who was arrested after she refused to remove her head scarf in a western Georgia courthouse filed a federal lawsuit Tuesday against the city of Douglasville and the officers who arrested her, contending they violated her constitutional rights.

Lisa Valentine said authorities trampled on her First Amendment rights in December 2008 when she was ordered to serve 10 days in jail for contempt of court after she refused to remove her hijab at a courtroom. She was released in less than a day, but her arrest infuriated Muslim rights activists and prompted changes in Georgia’s courtroom policy.

Her lawsuit was filed by the American Civil Liberties Union and its Georgia chapter.

After Miss Valentine’s arrest, a Douglasville judge ordered “special provisions” to be made for those wearing religious headwear. More sweeping changes came in July 2009, when the Judicial Council of Georgia voted to allow religious and medical headgear in Georgia courtrooms.


First female president elected by Union League

PHILADELPHIA | The glass ceiling at Philadelphia’s tony Union League has finally been shattered.

On Tuesday, the 148-year-old exclusive social club inducted Joan Carter as its first female president.

Ms. Carter said the league she is inheriting is a more vibrant and inviting place than the one she joined nearly 25 years ago.

The Union League is among the nation’s oldest private clubs. It was founded in 1862 to support the Union and the policies of President Lincoln.

Today it’s known as a hub for hobnobbing, power lunches, debutante balls and pricey political fundraisers.

Like many private clubs, it was a bastion of wealthy white males until it admitted its first black member in 1974.

Ms. Carter was among the first women admitted, in 1986.

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