But the protests, the cries of racism and “Islamophobia,” are sure to come — and then Quebec authorities are likely to cave. “Muslims seeking female clerk can ‘line up again,'” by Graeme Hamilton for the National Post, March 17 (thanks to all who sent this in):
MONTREAL — In recent years, the few fully veiled Muslim women who had dealings with Quebec’s health-insurance board could choose to be served by a woman to avoid exposing their faces to a man outside their family.
But in the latest example of the province’s growing resistance to the accommodation of minority religious practices, the insurance board on Tuesday announced the end of the policy after the provincial human rights commission said it has no duty to acquiesce.
“From now on, for a woman who is veiled with a niqab or a burka and comes to our office asking to be photographed by a woman, the answer is no,” said Marc Lortie, spokesman for the RÃ©gie de l’assurance maladie du QuÃ©bec. “Line up again, or come back another day.” […]
“If you want to integrate into Quebec society, here are our values,” Immigration Minister Yolande James told reporters last week. “We want to see your face.” Ms. Ahmed has filed a complaint with the Quebec Human Rights Commission. […]
“Generally speaking, staff at Ontario service centres are very aware of cultural requirements and diversity and we do our best to accommodate individual situations,” said Alan Cairns, a spokesman for the Ministry of Government Services.
The furor over the still rarely seen niqab is a clear sign that Quebec’s debate over the “reasonable accommodation” of religious and ethnic minorities has returned with full force….
Yep. And it’s going to keep on returning.