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Niqab on trial: What is really at stake?

N.S v. R. involves a sexual assault complainant who wears a niqab -- a veil which covers the face, with the exception of the eyes. The question before the Supreme Court of Canada on December 8, 2011 is whether N.S. can access the Canadian justice system wearing her niqab.

Women's Legal Education and Action Fund or LEAF intervened before the Ontario Court of Appeal and has been granted leave to intervene at the Supreme Court of Canada hearing.

LEAF works to ensure Canadian courts provide the equality rights guaranteed to women and girls by Section 15 of the Canadian Charter. They are based in Toronto, with member branches in several provinces, and their affiliate, West Coast LEAF, in British Columbia. 

Ellie Gordon-Moershel interviews LEAF’s Director of Litigation Joanna Birenbaum.

Visit LEAF's website at

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