Quebec Values Charter Challengers Wear Religious Symbols at Rally

This article was last updated on April 16, 2022

Almost 75 most notable challengers of the proposed Parti Québecois charter of Quebec values convened for a demonstration on Sunday afternoon, as they planned to gather for a rally at Place Jacques Cartier. Almost all of the participants at the rally wore variety of the religious symbols and garb that the charter aims to prohibit, especially skullcaps, hijabs and turbans on their heads and large crosses around their necks.

Majority of the participants wore these items just as a gesture of solidarity since many women who could be seen wearing brightly colored hijabs but it was visible that they don’t wear it ordinarily. Likewise, many men wore turbans even though they were not Sikh, and same was the case with many wearing skullcaps, like John Lesnik, who were not Jewish. Lesnik revealed that he was attending the rally, organized by a group called Support Another, because he believes in freedom of religious expression. Organizers of the rally, Sama Al-Obaidy, counseled participates to keep wearing these religious symbols on Monday while at work or school or out shopping “as an avenue to promote dialogue” and a way to “encourage people to ask questions and not judge.”

The idea of such event was conceded by a Concordia University professor, Nora Jaffary, who is not a Muslim but began wearing a hijab since the day the PQ tabled Bill 60 on Nov. 7. Hearings on Bill 60 begin on Tuesday at the National Assembly, after which an estimate of almost 250 are anticipated to be heard by many groups and individuals wanting to be heard.

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