The World Sikh Organization of Canada says some Sikh Mounties have been reassigned to desk duties because their religiously mandated facial hair makes it hard to properly wear a face covering.
The RCMP found the masks do not seal properly.
The organization says no attempt’s been made to accommodate the officers with other coverings that would work with facial hair.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says he’s very disappointed.
While health and safety rules are important and must be applied in workplaces, Trudeau says many other police services and organizations have managed to uphold health standards without discriminating against employees.
Public Safety Minister Bill Blair’s office also condemns the policy.
”They must not experience discrimination based on religion,” an email from his spokesperson reads.
”We … expect that this be rectified as quickly as possible.”
A sentiment echoed by the prime minister, who agrees what the RCMP did should not have happened.