The Niqab Ban Was Real

If There Are Concerns About “Telling Lies”, Let’s Tell the Truth

(Ottawa – March 14, 2022) 

Today, we provide an unusually short press release to set the facts straight. 

Today, Conservative Leadership Candidate Pierre Poilievre suggested that “There was no niqab ban. I would never support that, nor did Mr. Harper. What Mr. Harper proposed was that a person’s face be visible during citizenship ceremonies”. 

Many reasonable people, including Conservative caucus members who later apologized for their role in Harper’s niqab ban, would call this is a federally mandated niqab ban. 

The Federal Court of Appeal found that Harper’s niqab ban at citizenship ceremonies was unlawful. It is sad to see any elected official attempt to recontextualize an odious chapter in Canadian history that many members of his own party have apologized about. 

“Let’s call a spade a spade,” said NCCM’s CEO Mustafa Farooq. “While we take no position on the Conservative leadership race itself, we will never forget the sacrifice Zunera Ishaq made in standing up for her rights – against a government that tried to deny her the ability to be who she was. Our leaders should not attempt to gaslight Canadians to suggest that there was no niqab ban. Instead, our leaders need to focus on bringing people together”.