Thursday, April 17th7.0°C

French President Hollande tells Marois secularism eases social tensions

PARIS - An expression of support for secularism by the French president was greeted enthusiastically Tuesday by Premier Pauline Marois, whose government is trying to ban obvious religious symbols from the public service.

Francois Hollande said secularism and bans on religious symbols are the best way for a society to live together.

While the French president didn't give overt support to Quebec's proposed charter of values, his remarks indicated a shared view that Marois gleefully accepted.

Quebec's charter, which would forbid public-sector employees from wearing such symbols as the hijab, has been hotly debated since it was raised earlier this year. The proposed legislation will go before public hearings early next year.

Hollande made the comments after a 45-minute meeting in Paris with the Quebec premier.

Hollande said the French experience since 2004 has showed that bans on overt religious symbols has helped to ease tensions in pluralist societies such as France and Quebec.

On Friday, Prime Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault made similar comments, which was like "music to the ears" of the Quebec premier.

Marois was hard-pressed to contain her joy at Hollande's remarks although she hesitated to interpret them.

She did say France had been an inspiration to her.

The meeting with Hollande came on the fifth day of the premier's economic mission to Paris, Monaco and Brussels.

Hollande said he would like to visit Canada and Quebec.

Marois said she hopes the visit can be combined with a trade mission that would strengthen Quebec and France's ties.

The Canadian Press

Read more Business News


Recent Trending

Today's Market
S&P TSX14465.34+18.82
S&P CDNX997.32-0.65
S&P 5001861.24-1.07
CDN Dollar0.9097+0.002
Natural Gas4.697+0.167

Okanagan Companies
Pacific Safety0.115+0.01
QHR Technologies Inc1.21-0.01
Anavex Life Sciences0.365-0.01
Metalex Ventures0.0750.00
Russel Metals30.72+0.17
Copper Mountain Mining2.40-0.02
Colorado Resources0.2650.00
ReliaBrand Inc0.12-0.01
Sunrise Resources Ltd0.025-0.005
Mission Ready Services0.22-0.01



1882644Primrose Lane
3 bedrooms 2 baths
more details
Click here to feature your property
Please wait... loading

Time spent prospecting

How much time should you put into prospecting? The question is a bit of a puzzle. Ideally, there would be a reference book that lists, by industry, how much time you should invest in prospecting acti...

Valuation fears grip markets

The Big Picture Valuation fears grip markets Growing concerns about the level of stock market valuations sparked a risk-off trade in global markets this week. Investors are worried that many companies...

Quick and nimble

Photo: ContributedFor many businesses this has been a tremendously difficult time since the 2008 crisis. Business fell off. Sales techniques that always worked, well… stopped working. Customers...




Member of BC Press Council