California Governor to sign into law pro-Sikh legislations

Governor Edmund Brown

California Governor Edmund Brown would sign into law the two legislations protecting the rights of the Sikhs in the state and including information about the religion in high school curriculum.

One of the legislation updates the California high school curriculum so that every student in the State learns about the about the history, tradition and theology of Sikhism and California Sikhs.

The other legislation clarifies the Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA) to ensure that employees receive equal protection under law, specifically protecting religious observances such as the turban, hijab and yarmulke.

In a statement, the Governor's office said that Brown would give remarks and sign both the legislations at the North American Punjabi Association's peace and unity rally today, held to celebrate religious coexistence and recognize the victims of the Sikh temple shooting in Wisconsin.

"Both bills represent landmark achievements that will increase protections for all religious observers in the workplace and expand awareness of the 100 year history of Sikhs in California," said Balbir Dhillon, president of the Sacramento Sikh Temple.

"We cannot express the extent of our gratitude to Assembly member Mariko Yamada, Senator Loni Hancock and Senator Darrell Steinberg for their leadership in writing and ensuring the passage of these bills. We look forward to thanking Governor Brown tomorrow as we pray for peace and honour the victims of Oak Creek," Dhillon said yesterday.

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