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Quebec solidaire votes to fight ban on religious symbols

Delegates at Quebec solidaire National Council meeting vote overwhelmingly to fight the ban on religious symbols
Chantal Sundaram

March 30, 2019
With chants of So-so-so solidarité, Quebec solidaire delegates celebrated a decisive vote in favour of opposing any and all ban on religious symbols at a meeting in Quebec City on March 30.
While the vote came two days after the CAQ introduced its racist bill to ban the wearing of religious symbols by many public sector employees including teachers, it was the product of a long debate within QS to clarify and harden its own position against any ban on religious symbols for any profession in the false name of secularism.

Following the vote, Sibel Ataoğul, spokesperson for the "Solidaires pour un Québec laïque et inclusif" collective, stated "We believe that we have chosen to be consistent with our program and with the Quebec Charter of Rights and Freedoms which already guarantees non-discrimination."

The debate within QS not only clarified the party’s position but also its resolve to take on the divide and conquer politics of the CAQ. As speaker after speaker said, the consequences of this are real: racism divides our movement, and Islamophobia kills. The CAQ bill will immediately stoke violence against the Muslim community, and now that QS has affirmed its clear opposition as a party, it must put that commitment into action with coalitions on the ground to oppose the bill.
In the same week, QS announced another ultimatum to the CAQ government: take real action on climate change by 2020 or we will disrupt Parliament and prevent business as usual. QS is now well positioned to take on the CAQ on the two key issues of our times, the climate and racism. It is well positioned to be the real opposition, in Parliament and in the street.
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