October 22, 2018
Hon. John Yakabuski
Minister of Transportation
Ferguson Block 3rd Flr
77 Wellesley St W, Toronto, ON M7A 1Z8
Re: Amending the Highway Traffic Act to exempt Sikh motorcyclists from the requirement to wear a helmet
Dear Minister Yakabuski,
I hope this finds you well. On behalf of the Ontario Human Rights Commission (OHRC), I am writing to commend the government on exempting Sikh motorcyclists from the requirement to wear a helmet.
This change in law will ensure that Sikh Ontarians are free to engage in everyday activities while maintaining their faith as envisioned in the Ontario Human Rights Code.
As you may be aware, 10 years ago the OHRC intervened in the case of R. v. Badesha to argue that Sikhs should be exempt from the helmet requirement. Needless to say, we are pleased about this latest development.
I look forward to future opportunities for the OHRC and the Government to work together to further the aims of the Code, namely, to create an inclusive society where each person is able to contribute fully to the development and well-being of the community and the Province.
Renu Mandhane, B.A., J.D., LL.M.
Ontario Human Rights Commission
cc: Hon. Caroline Mulroney, Attorney General
Prabmeet Sarkaria, M.P.P.
Paul Boniferro, Deputy Attorney General