Saskatchewan

Harper talks maternity leave, public service niqab ban in Saskatoon campaign stop

Conservative leader Stephen Harper talked about parental leave benefits and brought up a possible public service niqab ban at a campaign stop in Saskatoon.

Conservative leader says parents would have option to stretch benefits over 18 months

Stephen Harper speaking at a campaign stop in Saskatoon. (Adrian Cheung/CBC News)

Conservative leader Stephen Harper talked about parental leave benefits and brought up a possible public service niqab ban at a campaign stop in Saskatoon.

In his speech, Harper promised a re-elected Conservative government will protect new parents' jobs for up to 18 months.

As well, parents will have the option to stretch their Employment Insurance (EI) benefits over a year and a half.

Harper also dealt with the issue of a niqab ban in the federal public service. The Conservative Party has said it would consider a ban for federal public servants.

The Conservative leader also said he would be looking at how the provincial government in Quebec is applying the legislation.

"We have said we will look at that bill before taking further steps," Harper said.

"The Quebec government has been handling this controversial issue in a responsible manner and we will do the same thing in Ottawa."

Harper gave a speech about the economy in Saskatoon last night.

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