Realities of Bill 62

by mrob10 on November 3, 2017 - 1:11pm

Just recently Quebec has passed Bill 62 which prevents the covering of the face when receiving or administering a public service. Justice Minister Stéphanie Vallée set out to clarify this very controversial ban. She says the law will only apply when communication, identification, and security reasons are involved. She says the law will only be implemented in certain cases, and was not meant to be “repressive”.


Bill 62 has been the lead to questions, confusion and riots/rallies in Quebec. The province has been accused of targeting Muslim women, especially those who where a niqab or burka. Some politicians have said it is unfair for public servants to enforce this law. Stéphanie Vallée said this would only apply if a women was asked to show a piece of photo ID. For example, student cards. However is someone is wearing sunglasses and/or a scarf, the same rules would apply. In opposition of what she recently told CBC news, Vallée says women would not be required to uncover their face for the duration of the trip. Either bus, metro, train etc. 


While at a public library, a women wearing a niqab is only required to uncover the face while talking to someone who works there i.e receiving a public service. At a hospital, it is similar to the libraries. When talking to an employee, you must have your face uncovered, however while in the waiting room, the face does not have to be covered. She also says, the law is in effect around the province, however there are exceptions for women wearing a niqab or burka on religious grounds. At the moment, there are no consequences or legal actions taken on people who do not comply.


The Coalition Avenir Québec and the Parti Québécois have made their feelings clear on the matter, even going as far as saying the liberal’s didn't go far enough with this law. Nathalie Roy of the CAQ called out Stéphanie Vallée by saying her sudden change pf thought was a “mess and a comedy act”. The PQ's Jean-François Lisée also showed his frustration and “ashamed” of a gorvenment who could not uphold, defend and stand by its laws.


The Quebec Solidaire voted against the law calling it "absurd and impossible to apply”. Also it is unfair to target a religious minority and their symbols while a cross hangs in the National Assembly. Along with the Quebec Solitaire premiers of Ontario, Albert and the mayor on Montreal have all criticized the law. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau even said that governments should not hold the right to tell women what to wear.


With all the opposition to this law, there are still lots of people who believe this law is a good idea. 87% of Quebecers agree with the law’s ideas and objectives according to an Angus Reid poll. According to the justice minister the law is a “well-balanced response” on the religious minority debate.


I believe that Bill 62 is nothing but a "law of fear". People are too scared and too paranoid. This law is completely unfair to muslim women and it is not what Canada stands for. Canada stands for equality for all, however this law seems to contradict that, even if it is a Quebec law. We can not be afraid of a whole group of people just because of the past. If someone is convicted of murder, we put that person in jail, not the entire family.


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Shingler, Benjamin. “Amid criticism, Quebec explains the rules of its face-covering ban”. CBC News. oct.24,2017.

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