Quebec to allow prison guards to wear headscarves

Opposition: new rules 'completely unacceptable'

After reaching a deal that stemmed from a complaint made four years ago, the Quebec government has agreed to allow female prison guards to wear headscarves on the job, Postmedia News reports. The decision stems from an incident in 2007, when a woman quit her training to become a Quebec prison guard when she was forced to remove her hijab for safety reasons. She challenged the ban and filed a complaint with the human rights commission. The government has decided to enforce an “accommodation” instead of taking the issue all the way to the provincial human rights tribunal. The opposition remains critic of the decision, saying it is “completely unacceptable” to allow government workers to wear conspicuous religious symbols, especially in a jail where “the neutrality of the state should be obvious.” In order to comply with safety regulations, the hijab will have Velcro fasteners, and those who wish to wear it must make a formal request first.

Postmedia News

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