Montreal – November 6, 2017 – Kathleen Weil, the new Minister Responsible for Relations with English-speaking Quebecers, expressed her commitment to making a difference for the province’s minority community and the Quebec Community Groups Network stands ready to work with her.
To engage with the English-speaking community, the provincial government must make investments in policy capacity in key sectors and regions, the QCGN told the minister as she sat down this morning with a delegation of 14 community leaders to discuss her new role.
“Since 2013, the QCGN has advocated for the establishment of a formal mechanism within the Government of Quebec that our minority community could work with to improve our vitality for the benefit of all Quebecers,” commented QCGN President James Shea, remarking that the QCGN is pleased that Premier Philippe Couillard has named Weil and tasked her with creating a Secretariat.
“Quebec now joins all other Canadian provinces and territories in creating a well-structured, and credible organization, resourced to make a difference in its linguistic minority community,” Shea told Minister Weil, noting that the QCGN expects “a robust and capable Secretariat that will withstand the test of changing governments.”
QCGN Vice-President Geoffrey Chambers, who heads the QCGN’s Government Relations Committee, said its vital that the new minister find ways of expanding government services in English to our community. He said that QCGN anticipates that Minister Weil and her Secretariat will develop a plan – in partnership with the community – “that will leverage all institutions of the provincial government to realizing the full potential of English-speaking Quebecers.”
“We have been complaining for years about lack of representation in the public service of Quebec which has resulted in a lack of input from and sensitivity to our community in government policy development,” said Eric Maldoff, who sits on the QCGN Board and Government Relations Committee. “We now have a first in a lifetime opportunity to have meaningful participation in the Quebec public service which must not be squandered.”