Marchers take to streets in favour of values charter
Published Sunday, September 22, 2013 2:25PM EDT
Last Updated Monday, September 23, 2013 7:54AM EDT
Protesters took to the streets of downtown Montreal Sunday to demonstrate in favour of Quebec’s proposed values charter bill, legislation which would limit the rights of provincial employees to wear religious symbols at work.
The protest – the first expressing support for the proposed legislation - was organized via social media.
About 1,300 of the 22,000 people invited on Facebook indicated that they would attend the event.
The protesters assembled off at 2 p.m at Emilie Gamelin Square outside the Berri metro. The demonstrators were scheduled to walk together to Place du Canada on Peel St.
Two previous protests have been held against the charter. On Saturday, a group protested the charter in Quebec City and eight days ago, several hundred opposed to the charter marched in downtown Montreal.
The group that demonstrated in favour of the charter Sunday appeared considerably smaller than the group marching against it last week in Montreal.
Many of those on hand carried flags celebrating the 1837 rebellion, while others toted fleur-de-lys flags or signs emblazoned with nationalist slogans. The demonstrators included internationally-reknowned sculptor Armand Vaillancourt and mayoral candidate Michel Brule, among others.
Those who participated in discussions on the Facebook invitation page cited a variety of reasons for supporting the charter.
Some argued that the measures are needed to advance gender equality, while one man said that many immigrants came to Quebec in hopes of living in a less-religious dominated atmosphere.
One person, apparently a young woman named Maoly Vincent, wrote: “It has come to a point where almost everybody around me is against the charter, calls me racist, intolerant and xenophobic, it’s reassuring to see that everybody here thinks like me.”