Speed Dating Event Creates Links Between Community Leaders and Federal Partners

Montreal – June 16, 2017 – 

More than 70 community leaders and 14 federal institutions participated in “Speed-Dating with Quebec’s English-speaking Community,” a three-hour matchmaking event during the Annual Meeting of the Quebec Community Groups Network on June 15.

With financial support from Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada (ISED), and organizational backup the Community Economic Development and Employability Corporation (CEDEC), this first-ever “Speed Dating” was for many, the highlight of the two-day meeting. The room buzzed with conversation as 13 teams, each comprising five leaders from across Quebec’s English minority-language communities circulated among the tables of federal officials for two hours.

“It’s fantastic,” said Kim Hamilton of the Quebec English School Board Association. “The speed dating element is kind of fun. The idea is very well put together.”

Another participant, Charlene Sullivan of Neighbours in Rouyn-Noranda, marveled at the amount of information she’d gathered; “I have a lot to analyze now,” she said.

Lorraine O’Donnell of Concordia University’s Quebec English-speaking Community Research Network, said the event helped her identify “many possibilities” for support for university-CEGEP partnerships, “including some I wouldn’t have expected, like the Canadian Space Agency.”

“The matchmaking session was such as success with members and federal stakeholders that we plan to learn from this years’ experience, fine tune our approach, and adapt it for future events,” said QCGN Director General Sylvia Martin-Laforge. “Our federal partners were so enthusiastic, that they are hoping to use our model for building relationships with other official language minority communities.”

The Government of Canada’s 2017 budget focused on economic growth, anchored around a skilled workforce, innovation, and employment. The Speed Dating event enabled members of Quebec’s English-speaking community to meet with federal institutions focused on innovation, research, employment, and business success.

Federal Institutions and Agencies that took part in the first-ever event including Canada Economic Development for Quebec Regions; Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation; Canadian Heritage; Canadian Space Agency; Canadian Broadcasting Company; Employment and Social Development Canada; Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada; Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada; Language Portal of Canada; National Research Council; Office of Small and Medium Enterprises; Status of Women Canada, and Statistics Canada.

22nd Annual Meeting of the QCGN – Working Together for Quebec’s English-speaking Communities

Under the theme Working Together for Quebec’s English-speaking Communities, members of the Quebec Community Groups Network will hold their 22nd Annual Meeting on June 15 and 16, 2017 at Le Nouvel Hotel in Montreal.

This year we will be holding our Members Convention and Annual General Meeting over two days. After an early breakfast on Thusday morning, the convention will begin with our professional development. Allowing all of our participants to benefit from the wisdom of our three presenters, we will begin in plenary where our trainers will each give a 18-minute presentation TED-style (Technology, Entertainment Design ). We will have three TED-like talks on a trio of themes – Building and Engaging Online Communities; Managing Workplace Environment; and Fundraising and Philanthropy. Our session will be followed by break-out sessions where participants can interact directly with our presenters, ask questions, and gain more in-depth knowledge about their topic of choice.

Following lunch, we will be hosting a free community/government matchmaking event. With financial support from Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada, the “speed dating” event will connect English-speaking community leaders and organizations with federal institutions that offer funding and services. The event will be sponsored by the Community Economic Development and Employability Corporation (CEDEC).

On Friday, we will reconvene early for breakfast followed by a series of information sessions. First up will be a panel about recent Statistics Canada population projections and how they will impact Quebec’s English-speaking Communities. That will be followed by a review of the Official Language Regulations (Communications with and Services to the Public) with Carsten Quell of the Treasury Board Secretariat; a talk on Measuring Community Vitality with William Floch, research Manager at the Department of Canadian Heritage; and a discussion on the renewal of the Community Development Plan for the English-speaking Community of Quebec.

After lunch, we will convene for the Annual General Meeting where we will deal with the business of our network. The AGM is free and open to all members and, once again this year, we will broaden access further by broadcasting it live via webcast. This will allow virtual participants to follow the meeting, and, if necessary, allow voting delegates from member organizations who are not on hand to vote virtually. If you are a voting delegate planning on participating via livestream, please contact Patricia Post. A link to the live webcast will be posted on the AGM website a few days before the event.

For the full schedule for the event and to register, visit qcgn.ca/qcgn-agm.
The page will be updated as additional details are confirmed.

QCGN Is Looking For A Few Good Men And Women

Are you someone, or do you know someone, who is devoted to the vitality of the English-speaking community? Do you or they support the vision and mission of the Quebec Community Groups Network? Are you willing to help us achieve our goals?

We are seeking talented and engaged community leaders who are willing to stand for election for its board of directors in 2017. There will be nine vacancies this year including the position of treasurer. A couple of directors are at the end of their term limits so the QCGN will be saying goodbye to Irene Tschernomor and Cheryl Gosselin. Six other director seats will be up for election or re-election.

Nominations for the board of directors are overseen by the QCGN Nominating Committee, whose members were appointed by the membership during the annual general meeting in June 2016. All member organizations, regardless of category, are invited to nominate qualified individuals to the board of directors.

“The board of directors works as a team to guide the QCGN and community with leadership and vision,” said Carole Mackaay, chair of the Nominating Committee. “They provide oversight on the management of the corporation’s affairs and act as ambassadors for the QCGN and the English-speaking community of Quebec.”

Board members are required to participate in regular meetings of the board of directors — usually six per year, two of which are face-to-face — and serve on one or more committees in their areas of interest and expertise.

Additionally, board members are expected to remain up to date on public policy issues affecting Quebec’s English-speaking community; remain in contact with member organizations; attend annual general meetings (usually held the second weekend in June); and participate in major QCGN functions including the Goldbloom Awards (held in October).

Mackaay said the Nominating Committee is seeking to create an engaged board of directors that is representative of the Network and balanced in terms of gender and age. It also seeks to include regional and sectoral representation (e.g. health and social services; education; economic development; justice; arts, culture and heritage; etc.). QCGN board members are elected to serve two-year terms and may be re-elected for a maximum of three consecutive terms (six years).

Directors make a commitment to volunteer an average of 10 hours per month to serve on the QCGN board. Corporate officers with additional responsibilities — that is the president, vice-president, treasurer and secretary — are expected to commit an additional five hours per month as a result of additional responsibilities. All directors are expected to be adept at communicating electronically, including through social media.

The Nominating Committee will consider all nominations properly received, and will provide QCGN Members with a report, and a slate of recommended candidates for the available vacancies, no later than 5 p.m. May 5, 2017.

Read the Call for Nominations.

Should you have any questions please contact QCGN’s Director General Sylvia Martin-Laforge at 514-868-9044 ext. 225 or at sylvia.martin-laforge@qcgn.ca.

Access to Justice in Both Official Languages

On April 11, the QCGN presented to the House of Commons Standing Committee on Official Languages for a study on the Full Implementation of the Official Languages Act in the Canadian Justice System. Accompanied by Michael Bergman of the Association of English-speaking Jurists of Quebec, QCGN expressed support for a Supreme Court of Canada appointment process that is transparent, inclusive, and accountable to Canadians. We also stated there must be a systemic capacity for justices to hear cases and render decisions in both official languages and that the language skills of judges must be sufficient to ensure the evolution of Canadian law.

Consult our brief in the Library section

The 7 Keys to Cracking the Quebec Code

Who are the Québécois, French and English-speaking? What makes them tick? What are their values and preferences? Produced by Léger Research Intelligence Group, and written by pollster Jean-Marc Léger, marketing professor Jacques Nantel and journalist Pierre Duhamel, Cracking the Quebec Code draws on extensive data to reveal who we are. Part social study, part marketing manual, this book unveils the character of Quebecers, both French and English-speaking. It finds differences between them, and similarities too. English-speaking Quebecers are hybrids, with attitudes a mix of English-Canadian and Québécois-francophone. The QCGN is organizing a conference entitled Cracking the Quebec Code: Understanding French-speaking Quebecers and English-speaking Hybrids, to get insights on our likes and dislikes, hot buttons and soft spots from Léger Group Vice-President Christian Bourque. Hosted by the QCGN and The Montreal Gazette, this conference is presented in partnership with the Fondation Notre Home Foundation, the Association for Canadian Studies (ACS), the Quebec English-speaking Communities Research Network (QUESCREN) and the Thomas More Institute.

For more details click here. http://qcgn.ca/quebec-code/

Poster for the QCGN 5 a 7

Final Youth Forum in National Capital Region

Montreal, March 13 – 

This past weekend dozens of Quebec youth gathered in Gatineau/Ottawa for the third and final Young Quebecers Leading the Way forum. Young delegates spent the weekend meeting with experts including politicians, journalists and others on six themes including Economy, Canadian identity, Indigenous peoples, Politics and Democracy, Social issues and the Environment and Canada in the World.

They presented their declaration on Parliament Hill on Sunday. Justin Trudeau’s federal parliamentary youth secretary Peter Schiefke, who was on hand to comment the work of our young participants, said he was most impressed by their engagement and forward thinking. Schiefke then took the delegates on a tour of the House of Commons where they got to sit in the seats of their favourite leaders, Ministers and MPs. Most also took a minute to sit on the Speaker’s throne for a selfie. The weekend was emceed by CBC Quebec’s roving reporter Marika Wheeler. For more photos, click here.

 

Prime Minister Responds to Our Community

The QCGN is very pleased to report that we have just received a letter from the Prime Minister unequivocally reiterating his personal commitment to the rights of our English language minority community and to those of the French language minority outside Quebec. The letter was gracious and heartening, as it was clear our Prime Minister understands the importance of speaking to minority language communities in their own language.

The QCGN has in turn responded to the Prime Minister’s letter expressing gratitude for his continuing support and the collaboration demonstrated by the Government. We have also extended an invitation on the community’s behalf to meet at his convenience to discuss the special challenges English-speaking Quebec faces.

Read the letter from the Prime Minister Justin Trudeau addressed to the Quebec Community Groups Network.

Official Languages Consultations Webcasts

The Cross-Canada official languages consultations 2016 rolled into Sherbrooke on August 5, and to Quebec City on August 23, and Montreal on August 30. English-speaking Quebec was represented at all sessions that were hosted in institutions of our community.

Watch the webcast for the Montreal consultation

Watch the webcast for the Moncton consultation

Anglos must ensure their rights are respected

Fighting for the survival of its institutions is of key importance for the vitality of English-speaking Quebec, QCGN Director General Sylvia Martin-Laforge said in an interview with CTV Montreal. Alliance Quebec founder Eric Maldoff said English-speaking Quebecers suffer from “benign neglect” on the part of government. Maldoff, Martin-Laforge and Official Languages Commissioner Graham Fraser contend Anglophones must get involved and fight for their rights. They also said the Quebec government needs to create a structure to look out for the interests of its minority language community.

Watch the interview with Alliance Quebec founder Eric Maldoff
Watch the CTV News follow-up story