WSO Encourages Sikhs to Familiarize Themselves with Olympic Kirpan Accommodation Policy

Ottawa – (February 5, 2010) The World Sikh Organization of Canada (WSO) reminds the Sikh community to become familiar with the guidelines accommodating the kirpan at the 2010 Vancouver Olympic and Paralympics Games. It is important that all Sikh spectators at the Olympics who wear the kirpan strictly abide by the guidelines.

Sikh spectators wearing a kirpan must inform security personnel prior to being screened at venues, and must meet the following stipulations:

1. All articles of faith must be worn.
2. The maximum TOTAL length of the kirpan, including the sheath may not exceed 7.5 inches with a blade of not more than four inches and a handle of two inches or less.
3. The kirpan must be worn in keeping with Sikh traditions including being secured into its sheath, attached to a fabric belt and worn across the torso.
4. The kirpan must be worn under clothing and not easily accessible.

WSO Canada President, Prem Singh Vinning said today, “The V2010 ISU’s kirpan accommodation policy is an important move in recognizing the needs of the Sikh community and making the Olympics accessible to them. It is essential that the Sikh community knows the stipulations in the guidelines and follows them closely.”

WSO is available to answer any questions that the community may have about the accommodation policy. If any issues arise during the screening process, please immediately contact WSO. WSO is committed to ensuring that the accommodation of the kirpan occurs smoothly and any issues are quickly resolved.

For further information or questions about the kirpan accommodation policy please contact either WSO or V2010 ISU .

The World Sikh Organization of Canada (WSO) is a non-profit organization with a mandate to promote and protect the interests of the Sikh Diaspora, as well as to promote and advocate for the protection of human rights for all individuals, irrespective of race, religion, gender, ethnicity, and social and economic status.

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For more information please contact:

1. Prem Singh Vinning
Tel: 604-312-6377
premvinning@gmail.com

2. Gian Singh Sandhu
Tel: 604-341-2755
gian@jackpinegroup.com

3. Balpreet Singh
Tel: 416-904-9110
balpreetsingh@worldsikh.org

4. Gurdit Singh Rangi
Tel: 778-322-9920
grangi@gmail.com

5. Sukhvinder Vinning
Tel: (604) 338-1299
anand75ca@yahoo.com