Is this a joke?

Perhaps the strangest racism row ever:

A RASTAFARIAN binman was stunned after bosses banned him from wearing a St George’s Cross bandana — fearing it was RACIST.

Matt Carter, 33, used the headscarf to keep his long dreadlocks away from machinery and had been sporting the patriotic look for the last seven months.

But Barbados-born Matt, who moved to Britain eight years ago, said he was given a dressing-down after council bosses received complaints.

Last night Matt, of Burnley, Lancs, said: “I always used to wear the bandana and no one ever said anything to me about it until complaints were made.

“I received a verbal warning and was told the St George’s Cross was not allowed to be seen on any clothing we wear because it could be considered offensive and racist.

“I still need to wear a bandana so I’m wearing a skull and crossbones one now. It’s to keep my hair away from the machine when I’m working — or else it could be dangerous.”

Matt, who has worked for Pendle council for five years, was told he was breaching a uniform code. A spokesman said: “Matt knows cleansing staff have a uniform and there are clear rules about what they can wear.

“We’ve made it clear they are not allowed to put stickers or flags on bin wagons or wear clothing which shows support for a certain team, group or country.

“We can’t make one rule for one person and one for another. Uniforms help make it clear to Pendle people who our workers are.”

Will he be given another verbal warning for supporting piracy? This is ridiculous.

Surely the council should not be discouraging people who have come to live and work in England from feeling at home.

And who could possibly construe a black worker wearing an English flag as racist?

I suspect that there would have been a different approach if the flag had been that of the British Empire…

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