MONTREAL – Denis Coderre stood up against the PQ’s controversial Charter of Quebec Values before he was elected, and that hasn’t changed since becoming mayor of Montreal.
Coderre calls the charter divisive and argues Bill 60 is not good for Montreal.
He has vowed to fight against it because he believes the state is already neutral and the best thing for Quebec is to have open secularism.
Coderre will be opening a dialogue with Montrealers to hear what they have to say on the issue.
He plans on using the next council meeting to have a vote re-affirming Montreal’s opposition.
Coderre is also preparing a brief which he will present to National Assembly during public consultations.
Before the election, all of Montreal’s councilors and all the mayors on the agglomeration council came out against the ban on religious clothing in the public sector.
He says the issue isn’t just social but will have an economic impact on the city.
“Integration doesn’t mean uniformity,” he said.
“Montreal is diverse and we have to keep it that way.”
He promises that if the charter passes, Montreal will contest its validity in court.
The debate is expected to rage on over the next few months.
Public consultation on the Bill will be held at the beginning of 2014.