Judge who told woman to remove hijab offering to apologize in settlement proposal

Hard to see that this apology is genuine or just an effort to avoid discipline given how long Judge Marengo has been fighting this:

A Quebec court judge who refused to hold a hearing for a Montreal woman after the woman refused to remove her hijab now says she’s willing to apologize for the incident, more than five years after it happened.

In February 2015, Judge Eliana Marengo refused to hear the case of Rania El-Alloul.

El-Alloul was in court trying to get her impounded car back.

“In my opinion, you are not suitably dressed,” Marengo told El-Alloul at the time. The judge said the court was a secular space, and no religious symbols should be worn by those before it.

Marengo compared the hijab to a hat and sunglasses, saying she wouldn’t hear a case from someone wearing those, either.

After the incident, dozens of people filed complaints with the Quebec Council of the Magistrature, the body responsible for disciplining judges in the province.

In a letter sent recently to the complainants, the council said it would convene a hearing Sept. 8.

“The purpose of this hearing will be to study a settlement proposal from the prosecutors on file, including a letter of apology from Judge Marengo to Mrs. El-Alloul,” the letter said.

The letter also said the apology would be released to the public, in exchange for the dropping of the disciplinary complaints against Marengo.

Council spokesperson Paul Crépeau told CBC News the settlement is being jointly proposed by Marengo’s lawyers and the lawyer handling the complaint for the council.

Long legal fight

Marengo has been fighting the disciplinary complaint in court for years, at one point challenging the authority of the council to even hear the complaint.

Judge Eliana Marengo’s lawyers are now proposing a compromise where Marengo would write a letter of apology to El-Alloul.(Radio-Canada)

After a request from the legal team assisting El-Alloul, the Quebec Court of Appeal in 2018 issued a judgment reaffirming that the Quebec court dress code does not forbid head scarves if they constitute a sincere religious belief and don’t harm the public interest.

El-Alloul herself filed a formal complaint with the council after the incident, but it was rejected because of a technicality.

However, dozens of other complaints were accepted, and the council convened a special panel of five judges to consider the case.

El-Alloul declined to comment on the latest developments.

Source: Judge who told woman to remove hijab offering to apologize in settlement proposal

Quebec woman denied her day in court over hijab turns down $52,000 raised through crowdfunding

Class act:

The money collected on the gofundme website was to be used to help Rania El-Alloul buy a car.

The drive was in response to a judge’s refusal to hear her case against Quebec’s automobile insurance board, which had seized her vehicle.

El-Alloul said in a letter on the website that she appreciates the financial support offered by the “generous and warm-hearted campaign.”

But, she added, she can’t accept the gift.

“The awareness raised by this campaign has brought us people from all over, who have offered support to carry this issue forward,” El-Alloul wrote.

“As a result, I believe that these funds can be put to better use helping those whose rights have been forfeited and stories left untold.”

Quebec woman denied her day in court over hijab turns down $52,000 raised through crowdfunding