Letter from Pauline Marois in Support of Bill 21
Pauline Marois was the first woman to become premier of Quebec, from September 2012 to April 2014. In 2013, her government proposed a Charter of Secularism, but was defeated in the election of April 7th 2014 before being able to adopt that Charter.
In a recent letter, dated 19th October 2020 and addressed to the Mouvement laïque québécois (MLQ), she expresses her support for the Act respecting the laicity of the State (Loi sur la laïcité de l’État), also known as Bill 21, adopted on 16th June 2019 by the CAQ government led by the current premier François Legault:
[…] the government which I led presented a charter of Quebec values, a draft bill which defined the parameters of State secularism. That charter, supported by a large majority of Québécois, was also endorsed by many personalites from Guy Rocher to Janette Bertrand. In addition, it enjoyed the unconditional support of Claire L’Heureux-Dubé, former judge of the Supreme Court of Canada.
Unfortunately, that charter was never adopted. The government of Monsieur Legault has taken up this issue anew, resulting in the National Assembly voting Bill 21, An Act respecting the laicity of the State, into law. Even if its scope is less extensive than the charter proposed in 2013, Bill 21 has allowed Quebec to make an important step forward in our long march towards full State secularism.
You may consult the letter from Mme. Marois (in French) in support of Bill 21.