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Religious garb ban bill riles Quebec

AFP-JIJI

Thousands of mostly Muslim protesters took to the street in Montreal to express anger Saturday at a plan to ban public workers from wearing religious garb in Quebec.

The prohibition of headscarves, turbans and other religious garments is part of a proposed overhaul of the province’s “Charter of Values.”

The planned measure, soon to be presented to parliament, has sparked a raging debate since details were leaked to the media a few weeks ago.

It would ban public-sector employees from donning “conspicuous religious symbols,” including headscarves, yarmulkes, turbans, and large crosses at work, but allows certain religious jewelry, as long as it is “not very visible.”

The proposal also requires people receiving state services “to make their faces completely visible” — a measure aimed at banning some traditional head-to-toe garments worn by Muslim women.