Outremont not to appeal eruv decision

The Montreal suburb of Outremont will not appeal a controversial Superior Court ruling over a symbolic Orthodox Jewish wall in the city called an eruv.

The eruv allows Orthodox Jews to perform certain tasks, such as carrying items or pushing a baby stroller from place to place, during their Sabbath. In an eruv, string or fishing line is used to close gaps between buildings. The line is strung between fences, buildings, hydro poles and other structures to create what rabbis feel is an enclosure appropriate enough to permit carrying.

Outremont residents packed the city council's gallery Monday evening. Most of the people there were against the eruv, and were calling on the city to appeal the Superior Court decision allowing it.

Resident Pierre Laserre says using public property for religious ends is dangerous. "It's never been done before, that on public property a religion, whatever it is, Muslim, Catholic, whatever, that they could make a territory out of it," he says.

But Michael Rosenburg, one of the plaintiffs in the case from the Orthodox Jewish community, says the people fighting the eruv are exaggerating the impact it will have on them. He says the eruvin in other Montreal suburbs have not caused any problems.