Welcome to Herouxville
Don't stone women
Published: Sunday, January 28, 2007
A rural Quebec town has taken the unusual step of formally declaring it is forbidden to stone women in public - part of a list of "norms" it says is aimed at potential immigrants.
Herouxville, about 165 kilometres northeast of Montreal, adopted a resolution at a council meeting this month that outlines what elected officials consider to be the town's official behavioural norms.
The document, sent to both the provincial and federal governments, states "a woman can ... drive a car, sign cheques, dance, decide on her own." However, covering one's face other than on Halloween, burning women alive or burning them with acid is not considered acceptable.
The document also points out to potential immigrants that Quebecers are used to receiving medical services from members of the opposite sex and that boy and girls often swim in the same pool.
"Don't be surprised," the document reads. "For us, it's normal."
Andre Drouin, who spearheaded the move to list norms, said the document was a response to what some perceive to be excessive accommodation newcomers to the province receive. Herouxville does not have any immigrants among its population of 1,300.
But Drouin said that could change given the Quebec government's policy of encouraging newcomers to the province to settle outside urban centres.
© The Gazette (Montreal) 2007