Scotland’s Health Secretary and his wife have taken legal action against a nursery they alleged discriminated against their daughter by refusing her a place.
The couple’s lawyer, Aamer Anwar, disclosed in a statement that his office served papers on Little Scholars Day Nursery in Broughty Ferry, Dundee, and its Director, Usha Fowdar, on Monday, claiming a breach of the Equality Act 2010.
The complainants, Humza Yousaf and Nadia El-Nakla, alleged that the nursery “unlawfully discriminated” against them and their daughter, Amal, two, “on the grounds of race and/or religion.”
The statement claims the nursery turned down attempts to secure a place for a child with an “Asian/Muslim name” three times but then offered places to children with ‘white sounding,’ non-Muslim names.
Earlier, a spokesman for the nursery owners said they were “extremely proud of being open and inclusive to all” and that “any claim to the contrary is demonstrably false and an accusation that we would refute in the strongest possible terms.”
A joint statement issued by Mr Yousaf and his wife said: “Despite being given ample opportunity, Little Scholars Day Nursery in Broughty Ferry had failed to admit, explain or apologize for their discriminatory behaviour.
“We have both stood against hatred our whole lives, often being the targets of vile abuse.
“We will not accept our children being discriminated against by anyone.
“Like any other parents we simply want our children to be treated equally, regardless of their colour of skin or religion.
“We strongly believe we have evidence of systemic discrimination being carried out by Little Scholars Day Nursery.
“As passionate believers in the fairness of Scotland’s justice system, we have now instructed our solicitor, Aamer Anwar, to initiate court proceedings and are determined to fight for justice for our daughter.”