Trudeau, the Liberals and their critics say the curtain style is outdated, discriminatory and out of date.
They say Trudeau’s plan to eliminate it will make Canadians feel more Canadian and would benefit from an overhaul.
They warn it will mean fewer Canadian dollars, fewer jobs and more international travel.
They also warn the change will cost the Canadian economy hundreds of millions of dollars.
In the House of Commons Tuesday, Trudeau and his ministers said they are going to make Canada a more inclusive country, and to bring about a change in how the country is represented on the world stage.
Trudeau promised to get “down to the core” of the curtain styles controversy in his speech, which was punctuated by his first use of the word “Canada.”
He said Canada is an open society, and that we have a proud history of tolerance and diversity.
The prime minister said the curtain is a “powerful symbol of who we are” and “provides a sense of belonging” to Canadians.
“We want to make sure that we continue to be the country that is welcoming, open and open-minded, a country that respects the dignity of all people,” Trudeau said.
“I will take a hard look at it, and if there is a way to change the curtain, I will do it.”
But critics say Trudeau will not be able to undo the changes because the government is committed to the existing policy.
They fear the move will harm the Canadian brand.
The curtain, they say, is a symbol of a country with a troubled past.
The curtain has been in use for more than two centuries.
It was designed in the early 1900s by an American artist, Arthur T. Howard, and is used in more than 100 countries.
Howard’s style has been seen as a source of racial stereotyping and racial prejudice, and it is often used to identify people of colour.
In a 2015 report, the British Library and the Library and Archives Canada said it had more than 1,400 examples of Howard-designed curtain styles and that there were more than 10,000 people in Canada who believed the curtain was racist.
In Canada, Howard was a controversial figure.
His artworks were a subject of controversy and led to a police investigation in the 1970s.
But Howard died in 1983 and his legacy in Canada has not waned.
His work is often referred to as the country’s most important modern artist.
Canada’s most prominent internationalist, the late Canadian diplomat and Nobel Peace Prize laureate Guy Caron, wrote in his book The New Frontier: A History of International Relations that “the curtain is still the symbol of Canada’s colonial and empire-building.”
He was also the architect of the Canadian-U.S. relationship.
Caron said he thought the curtain has become a source for racism and oppression in Canada.
He wrote that the curtain in Canada was “troubled by its association with the old colonial and imperial traditions and symbols, and by the way it was associated with a man whose image is often seen as offensive to non-European peoples.”
Caron said that as a former diplomat and diplomat’s representative in Canada, it was his job to ensure the curtain would not be used as a symbol by the Harper government, but rather to be used to promote Canadian values.
“It would be a grave mistake to suggest that the Harper Government would not want to change, to change in a big way, the status quo, the curtain,” Caron wrote.
Liberal MP Michelle Rempel, who has been calling on the government to remove the curtain since October, said she was pleased with the new cabinet announcement.
“They are making a change and we need to see that change,” Rempel said Tuesday.
In the House, Trudeau said he is looking at “every aspect of the program” to determine how to implement the new policy.
He said the changes will be phased in, and then will be rolled out gradually.
Trudeau said the government will continue to encourage women to work, but that it is clear there is more work to do.
“We must continue to invest in the long-term, and we must make sure Canadians have access to the best possible care, so that their loved ones are not left without the support they need,” he said.
On Wednesday, the Canadian Press reported that the Liberals plan to introduce legislation to remove barriers that prevent women from working as housekeepers.
The bill will also remove a requirement that a woman work as a cleaner and an expectation that women must take at least six weeks off each year to care for children.
It will also require all workers to be given paid leave, which will be based on their experience.
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