Kamloops Multicultural Society President 'shocked' over Quebec face-cover ban

By Vanessa Ybarra
October 21, 2017 - 3:10pm

KAMLOOPS — The President of Kamloops Multicultural Society says he was shocked by Quebec's decision earlier this week to ban Muslim women from wearing a niqab or burqa while riding public transit or receiving government services.

"It was a complete shock," said Ray Dhaliwal.  "These are regular people just like you and I who want to make Canada their home and we need to accept them. We need to accept all people and all types of religion."

Dhaliwal credits the ban to a lack of education.

"It's a fear for people who don't understand why they wear these niqabs and burqas. If they were more educated I think they'd be more accepting of it."

Dhaliwal says he's thankful to live in a city that doesn't impose restrictions on traditional wear.

"In Kamloops I don't think we have a very high negative issue partly because we have a lot of international students come through TRU. Of course there's little pockets of racism here and there that need to be addressed but the more we talk about it and get it out in the open, that's what we need to do."

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