In the exercise of their functions, public sector employees will have to exercise restraint with regard to expressing their religious beliefs. The Bill creates duties of religious neutrality and restraint for public sector employees by forbidding during working hours the wearing of headgear, clothing, jewelry or other adornments which, by their conspicuous nature, overtly indicate a religious affiliation.
An interesting human rights case is making its way to the European Court of Human Rights, where the British government is set to defend the right of employers to ban employees from wearing the cross at work as it is not a "requirement" of the Christian faith.
While Canada perceives it’s role as one of accommodating all forms of religious expression in a neutral manner, Quebec has decided to apply a more restrictive and formally secular approach. At a general level, this means the official separation of church and state. However, this proposed policy of secularity (bill 94) clashes with the religious traditions of many recent immigrants to Canada. To summarize, Bill 94 would require anyone providing or receiving government services to do so with their face uncovered for reasons of identification, security and communication. This includes services from hospitals, schools, universities, and daycare centres that receive provincial funding.
Read the full article on Slaw.ca.
Established in 1995, First Reference Inc. (known as La Référence in Quebec) provides Canadian organizations of any size with practical and authoritative resources to help ensure compliance.