Thousands of people of all races have been protesting against Quebec’s proposed charter of values.
The opposition is gaining steam as an online petition calling for inclusion has easily surpassed 15,000 names.
Quebec made international headlines by releasing details about the controversial secularism charter.
If this charter is passed, it will ban public employees from wearing turbans, kippas, hijabs and visible crucifixes.
The chances are this act will not pass.
Bernard Drainville, the minister in charge of the charter, announced at the national assembly public servants will be banned from wearing of religious symbols.
“If the state is neutral, those working for the state should be equally neutral in their image,” the minister said.
The proposed plan will apply to judges, police, prosecutors, public daycare workers, teachers, school employees, hospital workers and municipal personnel.
Soon after details of Quebec’s proposed charter were released, there was an outcry from numerous federal, provincial and provincial officials as well as other organizations.
They argue if this charter is passed, it will shake up the daily lives of thousands of Quebecers and could force many from moving to other provinces.
Others say the charter will take away fundamental rights from some of Canada’s most vulnerable citizens.
Canada’s multicultural minister Jason Kenney said the federal government will review any law Quebec passes that bans public servants from wearing religious symbols while on the job.
The federal Liberal leader Justin Trudeau and leader of the opposition Thomas Mulcair of the New Democratic Party also condemned the Quebec charter.
Quebec Premier Pauline Marois has been under fire since details about the charter were leaked in August.
A new online survey has suggested support for the charter has considerably dropped after more details were released.
Quebec’s Liberal leader Philippe Couillard warned the Parti Quebecois it would have to adopt the measure “over my dead body.”
He charged the government is playing with fire by proposing to ban public sector workers from wearing religious symbols.
Many members of the Sikh community are furious about the charter.
Chattar Singh Saini, a professional technologist of applied sciences, in a letter to the Montreal Gazette, he has contributed to the Quebec society with his turban on.
The writer said he is a Canadian and he will fight with other targeted groups - with his turban on – in the “face of this abuse of legislative power.”
“I have paid every due to this province of Canada like a good citizen,” Saini said.
He reminded readers Sikhs fought in the wars with their turbans for democracy and freedom.
A physician from the Sikh community said he is “hurt” by Quebec’s proposal to ban religious symbols.
Dr. Sanjeet Singh Saluja, who wears a turban as part of his faith, said Sikhs, Muslims, Jews and other right thinking people will not seat idle to fight the charter.
“Even though I love my practice here in Quebec, my faith is something that’s important to me,” he is quoted saying.
Saluja said he does not believe such a policy would ever pass in Quebec because he has never known it to be a closed-minded place.
“I have never had a Quebecer come up to me and tell me that I don’t belong here,” he said. “Personally, I am hurt. I am very hurt.”
He hinted he will leave Quebec if this charter passes.
Many members of the Jewish and Muslim community as well as well as Catholic have spoken out against the charter.