Wearing the veil by teachers: parents do not admit defeat

Parents who want to change their class child if the teacher wears the veil do not admit defeat: the Legault government has refused to recognize this right, but they intend to continue the fight.
D ‘re parents had signed an open letter in the media to claim this right under the new law on secularism. However, both Prime Minister François Legault and his Minister of Education, Jean-François Roberge, have closed the door by saying that the government does not want to let parents choose their teacher.

The law on secularism provides for a “grandfather clause”, an acquired right for teachers who were in office before its adoption, but future teachers will have to abstain from wearing religious symbols. There will be a transition period that must be accepted, the Prime Minister has decided.

“Iniquities”

Signatory parents still want to maintain the pressure and continue the fight. According to one of them, André Lamoureux, it is unfair, because one recognizes a privilege to the professors, without granting right in return.

“The famous clause grandfather generates inequities: some will be entitled to the luxury of the secular school, while the others will be left behind,” he said in an interview with The Canadian Press.

“That does not mean that I am against the person wearing his veil. The law recognizes this right, but recognize the right of parents to say: “Me, it breaks my freedom of conscience”. I’m sorry, the veil is a symbol of sexual segregation that is hurting women. ”

Teachers who complain about being bullied because they wear the veil “play a lot on victimization,” because the real victims are children, he said.

Mr. Lamoureux rejects the possibility of a judicial remedy, since the group does not have the means, but he intends to continue to put pressure on the government.

“It shocks me”

Another parent, Nadia El-Mabrouk, says she simply demands that the government implement its law, which recognizes the “right to secular institutions and public services”. She regrets that those who claim for their child a teaching in a secular setting are accused of racism, thus referring to an incident in Montreal.

“The requirement to have access to secular public services is not in 10 or 20 years, it’s right now! Will citizens continue for 20 years to be accused of racism when they ask to avail themselves of this right? ”

Ms. El-Mabrouk asks the government to put in place at least mechanisms for parents who ask to change their class child in the name of secularism.

“The government has to realize that there are inconsistencies. If changing class is no solution, find a mechanism. But let him throw back our hand like that. I am shocked that we do not defend citizens. ”

On Wednesday, Minister Jean-François Roberge declared that “it is not up to parents to choose or shop around their teacher. This is not provided for in the law on secularism and we do not intend to go in that direction “.

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