Proposal would ban religious garb in public sector in Quebec

Aug. 22, 2013 at 9:08 AM

QUEBEC CITY, Aug. 22 (UPI) -- Canada's Parti Quebecois may propose a ban of all religious symbols or dress for all public workers in the province, political officials said.

The provincial government has yet to confirm such a law will be proposed, but Federal Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau said Premier Pauline Marois told him "that indeed the preliminary reports and rumors that are out there are the general direction the government intends to go."

Under the proposed ban, all public workers, including teachers and doctors, would be prevented from wearing jewelry, like cross necklaces, head coverings and any other religious apparel, the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. reported Wednesday.

"To force people into a situation where they have to decide between their job and their religion or decide whether or not they are Quebecers first or Muslim first -- for me, that's not a question we should be asking people to think about, as Canadians or as Quebecers," Trudeau said.

Michael Lincourt of the Quebec Secular Movement agreed with the proposed law.

"The school is where you create citizens with the same feeling, the same awareness of their civic duties, their civic responsibilities and their civic rights," he said.

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