More Support for the Quebec Charter

Secular Ontario and Quinte Secular Humanist Association

Press Release, February 24, 2014

Secular Ontario is announcing its support of the Quebec Government’s initiative to promote the Charter affirming the values of State secularism and religious neutrality and of equality between women and men and providing the framework for accommodation requests.

In a recent letter to M. Bernard Drainville, Minister Responsible for Democratic Institutions and Active Citizenship, SO applauded the proposed legislation whose aim is to continue the secularization of Quebec.  With regards to the religious proselytizing symbols, their removal from the civic space is extending fairness to all citizens.

 

Quinte Secular Humanist Association is announcing a similar note of support [see below] has been submitted to M. Drainville. QSHA position highlights  the Legislation’s intent to help the development of a secular separation of “church and state” in Quebec and in Canada.

 

Quinte Secular Humanist Association sent the following letter to Bernard Drainville; the association received an acknowledgment of [its] letter from the “Political Attache” in the Quebec Provincial legislature on February 13.

Dear M. Drainville:

The Quinte Secular Humanists Association reaffirms its belief in the separation of Church and State and supports the intent of Bill 60. Our Association has agreed the following statement be publicly broadcast as a clear and succinct position on some of the components of your legislation.

Public bodies must, in the pursuit of their mission, remain neutral in religious matters and reflect the secular nature of the State. Accordingly, obligations are set out for personnel members of public bodies in the exercise of their functions, including a duty to remain neutral and exercise reserve in religious matters by, among other things, complying with the restriction on wearing religious objects that overtly indicate a religious affiliation. 

As well, personnel members of a public body must exercise their functions with their face uncovered, and persons to whom they provide services must also have their face uncovered when receiving such services.

As Secular Humanists our position on citizen rights extends to a neutrality that allows “humans to respect humans” without governmental prejudice.

Our Association further agrees that a letter stating this support should be sent to Bernard Drainville, Quebec Minister responsible for Democratic Institutions and Active Citizenship with a copy to Humanist Canada and other Provincial Humanist bodies in Canada.

Thank you for launching this “key note conversation” in Quebec and Canada’s evolution to a modern and inclusive society.

Respectfully

Representing the Quinte Secular Humanist Association

Eric Thomas

President

QSHA

2 thoughts on “More Support for the Quebec Charter

  1. Well, this is unfortunate.

    Government interference with religious expression of citizens is not secularism. Supporting Bill 60 just because you want to stick it to religion is shortsighted and selfish. This bill solves no problems, and will not make anyone’s life better.

    Meanwhile:

    Cases of verbal and physical assaults toward muslim women in Quebec are increasing. It seems that bigots have taken Bill 60 to mean that it is open season on this who are different.

    http://globalnews.ca/news/1165400/cases-of-hijabaphobia-increase-in-quebec/

    Bill 60 is also beginning to interfere with the Canadian’s government’s attempts to promote human rights around the world. Andrew Bennett got Charter of Values thrown in his face while trying to discuss human rights policies in Turkey, a country where the persecution of religious minorities is a serious issue.

    http://www.ctvnews.ca/canada/quebec-values-charter-tossed-back-at-canadian-envoy-in-turkey-1.1703186#ixzz2uNendOcU

    And among those Quebecers who are not francophone… well, half of us are considering leaving Quebec altogether.

    http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/montreal/half-of-quebec-non-francophones-consider-leaving-1.2549484

    Me, I just bought a house in downtown Montreal, so I’m here for a while. Still, between Bill 60 and the new promise that the PQ will crack down on shopkeepers who great customers with “bonjour-hi”, it seem like the PQ is deliberately trying to destroy Montreal.

  2. Here’s another data point.

    Veronica likes to serial-post about how this and that small organization supports Bill 60, while refusing to engage in any discussion or answer any questions at all on the matter. Well, even though popularity does not settle issues of right and wrong, I think this article from L’actualité is illuminating.

    http://www.lactualite.com/blogues/le-fouineur/charte-qui-est-pour-et-qui-est-contre/

    For those of you who do not read French, this is a list of the major organizations in Quebec that support and oppose the charter of Quebec values. Note that the list opposed is twice as long, and includes every single university in Montreal, plus Amnesty International.

    I think this helps illustrate just how closed-minded support for Bill 60 really is.

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