We’re looking for legal help in the Quebec area. I received this message from a longtime member and minister in Quebec:
I am a secondary school teacher living in Quebec, Canada. I am a Pastafarian. On March 28th, 2019 a bill was passed (bill 21) by the very racist and xenophobic provincial government presently in power. The bill prohibits people from wearing religious symbols in the workplace. It specifically applies to government workers, teachers, people in positions of authority or influence, etc.
While, on the surface, this may seem to be a secular move (something in line with Pastafarianism), the reality is that this bill disproprortionately affects religious minorities (muslims, jews) and also disproprotionately affects women. It also puts power in the hands of people who may have specific biases or agendas.
He started wearing a Colander at work around the time the bill was passed. His employer is attempting to force him to remove it under threat of disciplinary action. He has been issued a directive to remove the religious headwear and a threat of suspension or further escalation if he does not comply.
We are looking for help. Is there someone in the Quebec area that would be willing to provide legal advice and assistance? Please get in contact with me and I will forward the information. Thanks very much.
Update 2/25 — Wow this one is more controversial than I realized. More than a few “how dare you” type messages :) … I don’t know that much about this bill. I understand some view the bill as a step forward towards secularization of government, albeit imperfect. Others see it is as legislated racism.
I personally don’t have an issue with people wearing religious symbols/headwear in work, I suspect most Pastafarians don’t either. What we worry about is a religious person using a place of authority to push their beliefs on others, but it’s two separate things.
What do you guys think?