My Quebec: Indigenous ‘accidental anglophones’ face extra barriers

As a result of colonialism, the reality is that many Quebec Indigenous communities operate in, and rely on access to services in English.

Roughly 65 per cent of the 102,552 Indigenous people in Quebec speak English as a first, second or third language. This includes most Inuit; most Kanien’kehá:ka (Mohawk); most Eeyou (Cree); many Anishnaabe (Algonquin); many Mi’kmaq; and most Naskapi. That fact relates to the linguistic history of colonialism and religious missionary work that affected Indigenous people in this province. Indigenous people may, or may not call themselves “citizens” of Quebec, or Canada; the term “Québécois,” in particular, is seen by many Indigenous people as not including or applying to us. Nevertheless, we live here, and have for centuries.

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