The proposed Quebec Charter of Values would violate that province’s human rights law and would not survive a court challenge, says the chairman of Quebec’s Human Rights Commission. Among other things, the current government of Quebec wants to prevent public servants from wearing religious symbols such as head scarves, Jewish skullcaps, turbans and large crosses.
The right to display one’s religious symbols is protected by the provincial human rights charter, through the guarantees of freedom of religion and freedom of conscience, said chairman Jacques Frémont.
Minister dismisses human rights commission’s objections
The minister responsible for the proposed charter dismissed the unequivocal condemnation of the charter saying the human rights commission is out of step with Quebec society. His view is that Quebec society wants secularism to be one of the “values.”
Vigorous and heated debate surrounds the issue. Fewer than half of all Quebecers agree with the proposed Charter of Values. About the same number disagree, many of them in the cosmopolitan city of Montreal.