Defending new face-covering law,Quebec Justice Minister to release guidelines this week

Quebec’s justice minister, Stéphanie Vallée is expected to make public this week the guidelines for how Bill 62 will be applied as law, a document that wasn’t supposed to be ready until next summer.

She said it’s necessary to do so because things have “escalated” in the past few days. She is appealling for calm and wants to “properly communicate and explain” the law to the population.

Vallée said she was surprised by Canadians’ reactions since it was passed. Many have expressed staunch opposition, saying it’s a thinly veiled target of Muslim women who wear niqabs, is discriminatory and could encourage harassment.

According to an Angus Reid poll published Oct. 4, 87 per cent of Quebecers support the legislation. The law outlines that all public services, including public transit and hospitals, shall be given and received with uncovered faces.

Quebec premier Philippe Couillard  says of new religious neutrality law, “I should see your face, and you should see mine.”