Inaugural RCMP Turban

Inaugural RCMP Turban

In 1989 Baltej Singh Dhillon applied to join the RCMP and met all the entrance requirements. However, as a devout Sikh he wished to wear a turban, an important symbol of his faith, while in uniform. Controversy reigned for several months as the issue was debated in the national press and opponents gathered over 150,000 signatures on a petition. In March 1990 Solicitor General Pierre Cadieux approved changes to the regulations governing the RCMP uniform stating, "Under the Canadian Charter of Human Rights and Freedoms and the Canadian Human Rights Act and according to our government's multiculturalism policy, all Canadians should be free to seek employment with Canada's national police force." Dhillon entered the RCMP training academy in Regina and was posted to Quesnel when he graduated in 1991. He served in the community for 5 years until he was promoted and transferred to the lower mainland. Sergeant Dhillon is still a member of the RCMP and remains a symbol of strength and courage in the Indo-Canadian Community. This turban was donated to the museum by the Quesnel R.C.M.P care of Baltej Singh Dhillon.