How did Canada's 20 premiers and opposition leaders fare in 2013? Below, their report cards. (A+) One provincial leader gets
The Jewish General, founded in 1934, is one of Quebec's most prominent institutions. It is located in one of Montreal's most diverse multicultural areas. Approximately one third of its doctors, nurses and other employees wear religious headwear. Mindful of the Charter's impact on the Jewish General, Marois inserted "The Jewish General" clause in the Charter which permitted hospitals such as the Jewish General to temporarily exempt itself from this Charter. But to the Jewish General's credit, it refused to compromise its principles, to "play ball" with Marois.
The Quebec Association of Health and Social Service Institutions has reported that none of its members have ever had any problem with staff who wear religious apparel, and the Bouchard-Taylor Commission found -- after examining 900 briefs and 13 academic studies -- that the supposed crisis of religious accommodation was largely a "crisis of perception."
The notion that equality between women and men will be served through banning religious symbols in the public service has
Are we really the progressive nation that we like to think we are or is it just politically correct terminology that is convenient to use? What kind of nation do we want for our children? One of religious tolerance and understanding or one of intolerance, exclusionism and passing judgment?
To go, or not to go? That is the question. Pauline Marois and the Parti Québécois may answer it in the coming days as her
I'm an atheist and a feminist, who is, in theory, 100 per cent in agreement with separation of church and state, yet dislikes everything about this Charter. To many, this appears to be contradictory. How, you ask, can an atheist not be in favour of secularism? How, you ask, can a feminist, not be in favour of women's liberation and freedom; the right not to wear a restrictive piece of patriarchy-imposed clothing like the hijab? For the simple reason that the Charter of Quebec Values has absolutely nothing to do with those two issues.
Prime Minister Harper is often viewed by his many supporters and critics as a calculating political strategist with great political instincts. But here is a case, where Harper's acute political instincts have failed him badly. Harper has permitted his Finance Minister Jim Flaherty to revive Flaherty's all-consuming goal of creating a single federal securities regulator. Accordingly, Harper has committed an enormous political blunder.
While there's little serious debate in the Canadian press about the overall need for the Quebec charter and the headgear bans within, there's still much back-and-forth to be had regarding why the Quebeckers created the thing in the first place, and whether those motives are sympathetic or sinister. It's entirely possible for the Quebec charter to be a cynical vote-grab stemming from the dark side of Canadian politics, while also allowing that the "problem" the headgear ban seeks to solve is real and legitimate.
Like most religious minorities in Quebec, I am only slightly shocked by the proposed charter of values. The people that at the short end of the proverbial legislation stick are kids. Because our kids will live the rest of their future in the shadow of the laws and governments we support, it is imperative to consult them. So I decided to put my ear to the ground, and asked my youth group girls and their friends what they thought of the Quebec charter of values. Here are some reactions by girls age 12-16, all from different backgrounds and religions.