Marketing Junk Food To Kids Will Be A No With New Canadian Law

OTTAWA — A bill designed to curtail food and beverage marketing aimed at kids is expected to clear legislative hurdles in the new year as the Liberal government tries to combat rising obesity rates.

Bill S-228 was brought forward by former Olympian and now senator Nancy Greene Raine, who says the restrictions will help, though there is no “magic bullet” to address the problem.

“The low-hanging fruit is to prevent the marketing towards kids,” Greene Raine said.

“There’s hundreds of millions of dollars spent marketing junk food to kids. Why do they do that? Because it works.”

Greene Raine’s bill has reached second reading in the House of Commons, where it is being shepherded by Liberal MP Doug Eyolfson. It wouldn’t come into force until two years after it receives royal assent.

Earlier on HuffPost Canada:

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Eyolfson, a medical doctor from Winnipeg, said he is “quite confident” the legislation will pass in 2018, noting it will help ensure foods high in fat, salt and sugar can’t be marketed to children — a vulnerable demographic.

“We know that advertising works in all age groups and that when you establish behaviour patterns in children, you basically have behaviour patterns and preferences that will persist throughout life,” Eyolfson said.

“The urgency for this is because it is an ongoing public health problem and we need to take steps to address it.”

The low-hanging fruit is to prevent the marketing towards kids.Senator Nancy Greene Raine

The legislation will not change what products anyone can sell nor is it telling parents what they should or should not feed their kids, he added.

The food industry has raised several objections, including that would it ban marketing to people under the age of 17.

That age limit means an individual can join the military but potentially not watch a food or non-alcoholic beverage ad on Hockey Night in Canada, Canadian Beverage Association President Jim Goetz told a Senate committee in June.

“That is why we cannot support federal legislation that eliminates advertising of products and sponsorship of events directed at adults or are ones that children attend with adults,” he said.

“Parents are primarily making choices for their children; we believe parents should retain that right and responsibility.”



CP
Olympian turned senator Nancy Greene Raine brought forward a bill that will hopefully see the end of junk food marketing towards children.

Health Minister Ginette Petitpas Taylor said the age limit will be amended to 13, based on legal precedent in Quebec.

“To be very frank, this was a decision that I made personally because I just really want to make sure that we are not going to be finding ourselves in court and then everything is going to be on pause,” Petitpas Taylor said earlier this month in Fredericton.

“I really wanted to make sure that we could hit the ground running and make sure we could make some changes because at the end of the day, we recognize that children are victims of marketing.”

The government will also ensure sports sponsorships, such as Timbits hockey, are exempted.

— With files from Kevin Bissett

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Sterling Immigration Ltd. – The Leading Canadian Immigration Law Office Based in the United Kingdom See Surge in Emigration From the UK to Canada During 2017

With the uncertainty surrounding the implications of the Brexit vote on the UK economy, increasing numbers of British residents are moving to Canada. Sterling Immigration predict that this trend will continue throughout 2018.

LONDON (PRWEB UK) 28 December 2017

With offices in Birmingham and London in the UK, 2017 has been a successful year for Sterling Immigration.

With the uncertainty surrounding the UK economy and the implications that Brexit may have on several industries, many British residents are looking towards Canada as a land of opportunity and a safe place to raise a family.

The number of Canadian immigration applications filed by British citizens or those resident in the UK have increased by almost 40% since late 2015. The most popular categories include the federal skilled worker, federal skilled trade, family sponsorship, investor and student visas. Additionally, there has been an increase in the number of British companies looking to open a branch office or subsidiary in Canada, thereby gaining access to the North American market.

Harjit Grewal, Director of Sterling Immigration notes:

“Following the Brexit vote we have seen a huge surge in inquiries from British residents and EEA nationals looking to move to Canada. Canada offers a generous and welcoming immigration policy in contrast to the UK and USA. Its cities are rated in the top 10 worldwide in all reputable quality of life surveys.”

Sterling Immigration have been well placed to capitalise on the increasing demand for Canadian immigration services in the UK. With offices in central Birmingham and London, Sterling Immigration provide easy access by phone or in-person with an expert team of ICCRC Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultants. In-depth legal advice sessions on Canadian immigration law can be scheduled through their convenient online calendar.

The Immigration Consultants of Canada Regulatory Council (ICCRC) is a Canadian government organization created with the objective to regulate Canadian immigration consultants. Members are known as Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultants or RCIC’s. Sterling Immigration are proud members of the ICCRC, their license number is R507916.

Mr Grewal notes that one unintended effect of this rise in demand for Canadian immigration, is a corresponding rise in the number of unqualified agents offering Canadian visa services. These agents dupe members of the public into believing that they are registered by the ICCRC. They often make false or inflated promises to mislead the public.

“One of our key missions is to protect and educate the public about seeking advice and representation from an ICCRC qualified and regulated company. By choosing an ICCRC regulated representative your confidentiality, legal fees and documentation will be protected under the law and you will have recourse to the ICCRC in the event of a dispute.”

The consequences of hiring an unauthorised agent can be terrible for an Applicant. This includes not having a regulatory body to turn to in the event that there is a dispute between you and the agent. If the agent makes an error in your application, then you won’t have insurance coverage to cover you for any financial losses you have sustained. If your file is lost, you have no insurance coverage. If the agency collapses or goes bankrupt, you have no recourse to compensation.

In addition to this you are putting your future in the hands of an untrained and unqualified agent who will not be able to advise you regarding the subtle nuances of Canadian immigration law.

The primary goal of the unauthorised agent is to paint Canadian immigration as being fast and easy. They offer guaranteed results to ensure that you part with your hard-earned money.

Mr Grewal urges the public to exercise caution and always request their representatives six-digit ICCRC reference number and cross reference it on the ICCRC website.

Mr Grewal recommends that prospective applicants schedule an in-depth legal advice session in order to determine their eligibility for Canadian immigration so that they can understand the process, their ranking vis-viz other applicants, their prospects of success, the documentary requirements, timescales and applicable fees. Sterling Immigration have written a helpful article on the benefits of booking an in-depth legal advice session on their website.

About Sterling Immigration

In addition to their UK offices, Sterling Immigration was recently recognized as being in the top 3 Canadian immigration law offices in Vancouver for 2017. This was the third straight year that Sterling Immigration have finished in the top 3. Harjit Grewal states:

“This recognition has placed us at the forefront of Canadian immigration in Vancouver and makes us easily the leading Canadian immigration specialist in the UK.”

Sterling Immigration has long been recognized as a leaders in Canadian immigration law due to it’s knowledgeable staff, regular training and attendance at Canadian immigration seminars and events. The firm has contributed several articles regarding Canadian immigration and case law commentaries as well as comparisons of Canadian immigration law with other jurisdictions such as the United Kingdom.

“What separates our firm from several others in the UK is the fact that we practice both Canadian and UK immigration law. We are also the only ICCRC regulated company with offices based in both countries. Please note that Sterling Immigration are also regulated by the OISC to provide UK immigration advice (Reference Number F20170008). Please visit our dedicated UK immigration website for further information.

Our experience of British and Canadian immigration law, places us in a unique position when assisting British citizens or points based migrants in the UK to move to Canada.”

Specialisms

Sterling Immigration provide Canadian immigration solutions for individuals and corporate clients. They regularly assist Canada’s leading employers in hiring qualified foreign workers and applying for Labour Market Impact Assessments. We specialise in investor immigration, business visas, skilled worker applications, work permits, common-law partner and spouse visas.

For the original version on PRWeb visit: http://www.prweb.com/releases/2017/12/prweb15043746.htm

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On the precipice: Romeo Saganash’s bill will see UN Indigenous Rights Declaration become Canadian law

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It was over 30 years ago that a young Romeo Saganash first attended negotiations at the United Nations in New York City to help push Indigenous rights to the level of international law.

Saganash now stands ready to see his private member’s bill adopted by Parliament, thereby incorporating the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP) into Canadian law.

Speaking to the House of Commons, Saganash addressed his life’s work that brought him to that moment, as a residential school survivor who was “incarcerated culturally, politically, linguistically, spiritually even.”

When he got out of residential school, he had two goals. The first was to reconnect with the land and live off the land, which he did right after getting out. The second was to reconcile “with the people who had put me away for 10 years.”

Bill C-262, he says, is his attempt at reconciliation.

Saganash was born in Waswanipi, and first went to the UN in 1984. A year later he founded the Cree Nation Youth Council, and in 1989 became the first Cree person in Quebec to achieve a law degree. In 2011, he was elected a New Democratic Party Member of Parliament for Abitibi–Baie-James–Nunavik–Eeyou for the first time. He introduced Bill C-262 in April 2016.

At the time, Justin Trudeau’s Liberal government opposed the bill.

Famously, Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould, who is herself Indigenous from British Colombia, called UNDRIP “unworkable” within the context of Canadian law.

That all changed in November at an event to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the UN’s adoption of the Declaration on December 13, 2007. At the time, only four countries in the world opposed the Declaration, including Canada.

“With the direction and leadership of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, our government will support Bill C-262,” Wilson-Raybould said at the event. “The bill acknowledges the application of the UN Declaration in Canada and calls for the alignment of the laws of Canada with the UN Declaration.”

Assembly of First Nations National Chief Perry Bellegarde responded, thanking Saganash for his work. “Giving life to the UN Declaration in Canadian law will build a stronger country,” Bellegarde commented. “First Nations are looking forward to their opportunity to provide input and comment on the bill as it works its way through the parliamentary process.”

In a speech to a Parliament Hill rally December 4, Saganash said that the government only supported it because of widespread pressure from people across the country.

He emphasized that the bill was non-partisan: “It’s not about Romeo Saganash or the NDP, it’s about Indigenous Peoples’ human rights, their fundamental rights. It took 150 years to get here with respect to Indigenous Peoples, it will take 150 years to fix.”

A few hours later, he was inside the House of Commons for the first debate on the bill since it was introduced last April.

Saganash reminded MPs that the bill is not about creating new laws or rights; it’s simply about recognizing rights that are fundamental, inherent and pre-existent for Indigenous Peoples.

“Bill C-262 is about human rights. Bill C-262 is about justice. Bill C-262 is about reconciliation. If we are true to our commitment to reconciliation, this is the first step in that direction,” he declared.

Speaking on behalf of the government, MP Yvonne Jones, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Indigenous and Northern Affairs, said the government was proud to support the bill.

“We will do what is long past due in this country, which is to bring forward the right legislation and standards to ensure that self-determination and the inherent rights of Indigenous People are respected in the lands that we all love,” said Jones.

Saganash said he expects Parliament to vote on the bill sometime in late February or March.

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Canadian stability, law, a big magnet for investors

Canadian commercial-property investment is on track to break last year’s record, according to CBRE Group Inc., driven by demand for a haven from global instability and a quest for yield.

CBRE forecasts transactions topping $40 billion for 2017, up at least 15 per cent from last year’s record of $34.7 billion, the real estate services firm said in a statement. Transactions for the fourth quarter haven’t been accounted for yet, but investments for this year through September totalled $33.1 billion, almost matching all of 2016.

Real estate no longer looks like an alternative asset class, Peter Senst, president of Canadian capital markets for CBRE, said.

“When you look at relative returns, it stacks up very well against equities, infrastructure, bonds, so it’s becoming more of an acceptable strategy to pursue,” he said. “The deal sizes are getting bigger, the frequency and velocity for the deals getting out are becoming greater.”

Demand for commercial assets in Canada’s most populous cities, including Toronto and Vancouver, is sending prices soaring. The vacancy rates in these cities are among the lowest downtown office vacancy rates across North America.

Among the most active investors in Canadian commercial property are pension funds, so far accounting for 26 per cent of all transactions above $10 million, an 82 per cent increase from the same period in 2016, according to CBRE.

Foreign demand continues to soar for Canadian commercial investments, accounting for 15 per cent of all transactions above $10 million. One of the attractions for foreign investors is a soft Canadian dollar.

“There are a lot of reasons why groups want to come in — partly the dollar, partly the rule of law,” Senst said. “We look like a relative safe haven. We’re kind of like the Switzerland of North America.”

Bloomberg

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Canadian Emissary Addresses Knesset on Premarital Counseling Law

Chabad-Lubavitch emissary Goldie Plotkin was invited to speak at a Knesset meeting last month on the need for premarital counseling for Jewish men and women. Plotkin, who along with her husband, Rabbi Avrohom Plotkin, co-directs Chabad Lubavitch of Markham in Toronto, Canada, has been counseling young couples for more than 18 years and has recorded videos of her workshops for Chabad.org. This mother and grandmother described her most recent trip to Israel, the rather impromptu visit to the Knesset and the importance of communication for couples once wed.

Q: So how did the presentation in the Knesset come about?

A: I was in Israel for a community mission; we took several community members on a tour to Poland and then Israel. Two weeks before we were set to leave, I got a call from Susan Barth, the founder and director of B’Yachad B’Osher, the “Together in Happiness Center for Marriage Education.” She told me that she watches my workshops online and has begun offering premarital classes in Israel. She also mentioned that Knesset Member Yehuda Glick is proposing legislation to make premarital counseling mandatory in Israel, and that a committee meeting was scheduled for November 8.

I told her it was such a pity because I was only going to be in Israel until November 6. And she said, “You’re going to be in Israel? Cancel your return because I’m going to book you a flight back. You have to stay and speak to the Knesset.”

Q: Can you describe your address? What were some of the highlights?

A: I spoke in English, even though it was the Knesset [where most matters are undertaken in Hebrew]. I was the only religious representative who spoke; I gave the Torah perspective on marriage.

Other speakers included therapists, judges, doctors and a mediator, all of whom discussed marital problems in Israel, how they are climbing, and the affect this is having on families’ mental health and the economy. They were trying to impress on Yehuda Glick that this is legislation that must be passed.

Plotkin co-directs Chabad Lubavitch of Markham in Toronto (Photo: Eden Video)

Plotkin co-directs Chabad Lubavitch of Markham in Toronto (Photo: Eden Video)

Q: I understand that you got some very exciting news just before you started your talk.

A: Yes, I got text that my daughter back home in Canada was in labor. I said I’d like to ask all people of this holy place [Jerusalem] to say a blessing that my daughter should have an easy birth and the baby should be healthy, and everyone said “Amen.” My brother, Rabbi Kasriel Shemtov, executive director of the Mayanot Institute of Jewish Studies in Jerusalem, joked that this was the first time that something was raised in Knesset and agreed upon that same day.

Q: How long have you been offering marital classes?

A: Marriage is my passion. I have taught brides about the importance and beauty of mikvah since I arrived in Canada 32 years ago. My husband and I turned it into a couple’s workshop 18 years ago, when we created a more expansive curriculum. Today, we run a six-week course that covers the mitzvah of mikvah and marital communication.

Why do we get married? To buy a house? To have kids? We get married because in Judaism, marriage is kadosh [“holy”]. And when a man and a woman stand under a chuppah, they bring G‑d as a third partner. When a husband and wife begin their journey with G‑d’s blessing, they’re already headed for success.

Susan Barth, founder and director of B’Yachad B’Osher, the “Together in Happiness Center for Marriage Education,” and Knesset Member Yehuda Glick (Photo: Eden Video)

Susan Barth, founder and director of B’Yachad B’Osher, the “Together in Happiness Center for Marriage Education,” and Knesset Member Yehuda Glick (Photo: Eden Video)

Q: In your opinion, why is there such a need for these classes?

A: Sadly, I don’t know how many kids today are seeing great marital role-modeling among their parents and other adults, so it’s very important to give them the skills to succeed in marriage.

A lot of people know what not to do in a marriage, but that’s just the first step. We try and start at the basics through role-playing games, introducing different scenarios and more. We give each couple an envelope and ask them to write a letter to themselves about how they envision their marriage to be. We send it to them about four months into their marriage. The letter can serve as a reminder of the importance about treating your spouse with derech eretz—with respect and the love you share.

The Rebbe [Rabbi Menachem M. Schneerson, of righteous memory] speaks so much about marriage, and that the foundation of the Jewish people is a stable home. The whole world is looking at what’s happening in Israel. . . . What’s the talk in the Knesset? We’re listening, we’re learning, we want to know. Because you are the light unto the nations. And the way you go is the way we go.

So this is the most crucial legislation you can pass. If our marriages fall apart, there goes the Jewish family. Who are we, if not for our homes?

Speakers included therapists, judges, doctors and a mediator, all of whom discussed marital problems in Israel, how they are climbing, and the affect this is having on families’ mental health and the economy. (Photo: Eden Video)

Speakers included therapists, judges, doctors and a mediator, all of whom discussed marital problems in Israel, how they are climbing, and the affect this is having on families’ mental health and the economy. (Photo: Eden Video)

Q: What is the secret of a good marriage?

A: It’s all about relationships and shalom bayit, “peace in the home.”

Men and women come from different planets; they speak different languages. Communication is key, which is why we focus on communication skills in our classes. What makes people G‑dly is our ability to communicate our thoughts and our emotions. That said, you shouldn’t give your spouse the silent treatment; women tend to do this when they’re upset. But men can’t read minds . . . and who would want them to anyway?

When you learn how men and women think differently—and that there are different ways to speak and discuss important matters—we learn to adapt and make tiny changes that can have the greatest impact on a marriage.

Couples have to appreciate how deep and important this relationship is.

(Photo: Eden Video)

(Photo: Eden Video)

(Photo: Eden Video)

(Photo: Eden Video)

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Canadian judge strikes down law that banned face coverings

A Canadian judge granted a temporary stay, Friday, to a law that banned face coverings on those who provided or received public services in the province of Quebec.

Justice Babak Barin ruled that the province cannot order people to remove their face coverings until a provision is put into the law that allows for citizens to apply for religious accommodations.

The law, called Bill 62, was seen by many as targeting Muslims because some Muslim women wear niqabs or hijabs. The province said the law was only to provide clear separation between state and religion, known as a state religious neutrality law.

The National Council of Canadian Muslims (NCCM) and the Canadian Civil Liberties Association launched a court challenge to the law, arguing that it violates the freedom of religion and equality. They asked that the law be set aside until the court could rule whether it is unconstitutional.

But the justice did not go that far and granted a temporary stay, until the provincial government provides a section to allow those who object to the law on religious grounds to file for exemption. Bill 62 does have a clause giving people the right to file for religious accommodations, but that part of the legislation has yet to be put into force. As such, the justice ruled the law is incomplete.

“It is not unreasonable to expect that a state religious neutrality law enacted by the government should apply in a well-thought-out and comprehensive manner, especially when the law in question has been in preparation for some time,” he said in his ruling. “In the interim, noble as the ideology of state religious neutrality may be, the government must ensure that the law it is adopting for the public good is coherent and complete.”

The government said the religious accommodation clause would not be ready to be put into effect until summer.

Catherine McKenzie, the lawyer representing the NCCM and the civil liberties union, said she would have preferred that the law be scrapped completely, but a temporary ban was acceptable and her clients were “happy.”

“I understand the position of the court,” MacKenzie told Canadian media.

Quebec Premier Philippe Couillard said the government was not surprised by the ruling.

“I’m not unsatisfied with the judgment because there’s no mention of a violation of the charters (of rights) or any major constitutional problem,” he told reporters.

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Leading Canadian Law Firm Stikeman Elliott Lays Foundation for the Future with iManage Work Product Management

CHICAGO, Nov. 14, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — iManage, the company dedicated to transforming how professionals work, today announced that Stikeman Elliott LLP — one of Canada’s leading business law firms — has selected iManage as its firm-wide Work Product Management platform.

After conducting a comprehensive internal review of its business processes and work product management needs, the firm sought a world-class, fully integrated solution. The solution had to address firm members changing needs and expectations around how technology can better support document and email management. iManage delivered a platform that fully meets the ever-increasing needs for governance and protection of sensitive data.

“iManage gives us the capabilities we need to continue to deliver the highest level of service to our clients,” said Jean McLeod, Chief Operating Officer, Stikeman Elliott. “iManage enables our professionals to work intuitively regardless of device or location. We see it as making ourselves future ready.”

Key factors in Stikeman Elliott’s decision encompassed the modern, intuitive user experience of iManage Work 10 and its built-in smart features that actively help lawyers work more efficiently. The firm also valued the integrated security management and powerful machine learning-based threat protection from iManage Threat Manager. Additionally, iManage Records Manager will support the firm’s information governance requirements. iManage Records Manager automates the management of physical and electronic content throughout the work product lifecycle — from creation to appropriate disposition of records when no longer required.

“Global professional services firms such as Stikeman Elliott expect their mission critical systems keep pace with market changes and capitalize on the latest technological innovations,” said Dan Carmel, Chief Marketing Officer, iManage. “With iManage, Stikeman Elliott is using the latest innovations in user centric software to work, increasing the firm’s ability to respond to its clients’ changing demands.”  

Follow iManage via:
Twitter: https://twitter.com/imanageinc
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/iManageinc/
Blog: https://imanage.com/blog/
Vimeo: https://vimeo.com/imanage
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/imanage

About iManage
iManage transforms how professionals in legal, accounting and financial services get work done by combining the power of artificial intelligence with market leading document and email management. iManage automates routine cognitive tasks, provides powerful insights and streamlines how professionals work, while maintaining the highest level of security and governance over critical client and corporate data. Over one million professionals at over 3,000 organizations in over 65 countries – including more than 2,000 law firms and 500 corporate legal departments – rely on iManage to deliver great client work.

Press Contact Information:
Manjul Gupta
Head of Corporate Communications
iManage
Phone: 669-777-3430
press@imanage.com   


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Leading Canadian Law Firm Stikeman Elliott Lays Foundation for the Future with iManage Work Product Management

Firm selects iManage as best choice for its document and email management needs

CHICAGO, Nov. 14, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — iManage, the company dedicated to transforming how professionals work, today announced that Stikeman Elliott LLP — one of Canada’s leading business law firms — has selected iManage as its firm-wide Work Product Management platform.

/EIN News/ — After conducting a comprehensive internal review of its business processes and work product management needs, the firm sought a world-class, fully integrated solution. The solution had to address firm members changing needs and expectations around how technology can better support document and email management. iManage delivered a platform that fully meets the ever-increasing needs for governance and protection of sensitive data.

“iManage gives us the capabilities we need to continue to deliver the highest level of service to our clients,” said Jean McLeod, Chief Operating Officer, Stikeman Elliott. “iManage enables our professionals to work intuitively regardless of device or location. We see it as making ourselves future ready.”

Key factors in Stikeman Elliott’s decision encompassed the modern, intuitive user experience of iManage Work 10 and its built-in smart features that actively help lawyers work more efficiently. The firm also valued the integrated security management and powerful machine learning-based threat protection from iManage Threat Manager. Additionally, iManage Records Manager will support the firm’s information governance requirements. iManage Records Manager automates the management of physical and electronic content throughout the work product lifecycle — from creation to appropriate disposition of records when no longer required.

“Global professional services firms such as Stikeman Elliott expect their mission critical systems keep pace with market changes and capitalize on the latest technological innovations,” said Dan Carmel, Chief Marketing Officer, iManage. “With iManage, Stikeman Elliott is using the latest innovations in user centric software to work, increasing the firm’s ability to respond to its clients’ changing demands.”  

Follow iManage via:
Twitter: https://twitter.com/imanageinc
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/iManageinc/
Blog: https://imanage.com/blog/
Vimeo: https://vimeo.com/imanage
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/imanage

About iManage
iManage transforms how professionals in legal, accounting and financial services get work done by combining the power of artificial intelligence with market leading document and email management. iManage automates routine cognitive tasks, provides powerful insights and streamlines how professionals work, while maintaining the highest level of security and governance over critical client and corporate data. Over one million professionals at over 3,000 organizations in over 65 countries – including more than 2,000 law firms and 500 corporate legal departments – rely on iManage to deliver great client work.

Press Contact Information:
Manjul Gupta
Head of Corporate Communications
iManage
Phone: 669-777-3430
press@imanage.com   


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Canadian Muslim group challenges Quebec face cover law

A Canadian Muslim group and a civil liberties association on Tuesday filed a challenge to a law in Quebec province that forbids face-covering by those who wish to access or provide public services.

The law represents “blatant and unjustified violations of freedom of religion”, the National Council of Canadian Muslims (NCCM) and the Canadian Civil Liberties Association said in the filing in Quebec Superior Court.

They argue the new face-covering law takes direct aim at Muslims who wear a niqab or burka and runs contrary to the Quebec Charter of Human Rights and Freedoms and the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. Both charters ban discrimination based on personal characteristics, including religion or creed.

At a news conference Tuesday in Montreal, Ihsaan Gardee, executive director of the NCCM, said the law is discriminatory.

“Our legal challenge targets the heart of what this law really is: a discriminatory, unconstitutional and unnecessary piece of legislation that excludes and stigmatizes an already marginalized and vulnerable minority of women and, by extension, the larger Quebec Muslim community,” he said.

Under the law, public servants such as teachers and nurses are forbidden to wear any face covering while providing services.

Anyone who wishes to access public service, such as a student boarding a bus who wants a student fare, must uncover her face for identification purposes.

The Quebec government passed the law last month, reasoning it was to separate the state and religion, as well as allowing proper communication, identification and security in public services.

Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould told Anadolu Agency her department is aware of the legal challenge and that the government does not want to dictate how Canadians should dress.

“We have been following the progress of Bill 62 and appreciate the importance of the issues it raises,” she said. “As the Prime Minister [Justin Trudeau] has said, we do not believe that the government should be telling people what they can and cannot wear.

“As Attorney General of Canada, I am committed to upholding the rights of all Canadians under the Charter of Rights and Freedoms,”

The law was widely criticized, including by the Quebec association of municipalities, Montreal mayor-elect Valerie Plante and the premiers of Ontario and Alberta.

Two Quebec Muslim women were also included in the court filing.

Fatima Ahmad, 21, said she now avoids the bus in Montreal because she is afraid she will be asked to remove her niqab, compromising her religious beliefs.

At the news conference, Marie-Michelle Lacoste, who uses the name Warda Naili since she converted to Islam and adopted the niqab, said she has been “living in fear” the new law would stoke anti-Muslim feelings.

Quebec Minister of Justice Stephanie Vallee told reporters she believes the law will stand up to the legal challenge.

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