Many Anglos side with Franco-Ontarians (FR)

TORONTO – Alors que la communauté franco-ontarienne organise sa riposte aux coupures de Doug Ford, des anglophones font savoir qu’ils partagent leur colère. Et ils comptent se joindre aux actions qui seront entreprises au cours des prochaines semaines avec la ferme intention de faire reculer le gouvernement ontarien.

Jeudi 15 novembre, aux alentours de 13h30, le gouvernement Ford annonçait l’élimination du Commissariat aux services en français et l’annulation du projet d’Université de l’Ontario français. L’organisme anglo-québécois Quebec Community Groups Network (QCGN) a été l’un des premiers à dénoncer ces coupures.

«Notre organisme regardait l’Ontario comme un modèle en ce qui a trait à la manière dont on devrait traiter une communauté linguistique minoritaire», a écrit l’organisme dans un communiqué.

Selon QCGN, la formule ontarienne se base sur trois piliers qui sont indissociables: «Une Loi sur les services en français, qui protège les droits des Franco-Ontariens. Un Office des Affaires francophones qui s’assure que des services en français sont offerts. Puis, un Commissaire aux services en français qui s’assure que ces droits sont respectés».

Selon le groupe, on ne peut pas s’en prendre à l’un d’eux sans provoquer de graves conséquences, ce qui le motive à prendre part au mouvement.

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Ontario’s decisions about Francophones : Caroline Mulroney breaks her silence (FR)

OTTAWA | La ministre déléguée aux Affaires francophones de l’Ontario, Caroline Mulroney, est finalement sortie de son mutisme vendredi, 24 heures après que son gouvernement eut annoncé la fin du projet d’université de langue française à Toronto et d’abolition du Commissariat aux services en français.

En entrevue à la caméra de Radio-Canada à Terre-Neuve où elle participait à une rencontre ministérielle, Mme Mulroney a indiqué que les droits des 600 000 francophones ontariens vont être protégés.

«Le travail que fait le Commissariat va toujours continuer, les droits linguistiques vont être protégés. Les Ontariens et les Ontariennes auront toujours un bureau indépendant du gouvernement pour porter plainte s’ils en ont. Il y aura un agent indépendant. L’ombudsman, comme présentement le commissaire, qui va pouvoir étudier ces plaintes et produire des rapports s’il le veut», a-t-elle dit.

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Quebec’s minority-language groups ‘outraged’ over Ontario’s plan to scrap French university

There is concern in Quebec for minority language rights after the Ontario government cancelled plans to build the province’s first francophone university.

The announcement was buried at the bottom of an economic update Doug Ford’s Ontario budget Thursday — the office of the French-language commissioner was abolished. So, too, was the plan to build the new French university in Toronto by 2020.

It’s a question of money, the government said.

“The deficit is real; our debt is real,” said Ontario Finance Minister Vid Fedeli.

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The revision of history books upsets historians (FR)

Remplacement de « plusieurs images considérées comme stéréotypées », retrait d’un passage du Journal de Jacques Cartier, ajout « des conséquences négatives de l’invasion du territoire par les Français »… : les dizaines de modifications apportées au matériel didactique requis pour l’enseignement du cours d’Histoire du Québec et du Canada font sourciller les historiens Gilles Laporte et Denys Delâge — qui qualifient l’une d’elles d’« absurde » et d’« aberrante ».

Les deux membres du comité de révision scientifique de la première édition de Chroniques du Québec et du Canada : des origines à 1840(Pearson ERPI) — l’un des manuels dont le contenu a été modifié dans les derniers mois à la demande expresse du ministère de l’Éducation et de l’Enseignement supérieur (MEES) — déplorent le polissage du récit historique.

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Wave of solidarity with Franco-Ontarians

It was not just the Fédération des communautés francophones et acadienne (FCFA) of Canada who spoke up at the end of the day onThursday, flying to the rescue of Franco-Ontarians, after the announcement of the abolition of the Office of the Commissioner French-language services and the abandonment of the University of Ontario French project.

In the neighboring province, several Quebec media covered the news and the Premier, François Legault, made a comment to Radio-Canada.

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Is sovereignty dead?

With both the PQ and Bloc Québécois on the ropes, some are declaring that sovereignty is dead. We ask Montrealers from across the political spectrum to weigh in on the issue.

Watch video

QCGN to pay tribute to four remarkable community leaders Nov. 1

Four inspirational leaders of the English-speaking community are being celebrated by the Quebec Community Groups Network, with this year’s 10th anniversary of its Community Awards. Murielle Parkes and Olga Melikoff, known to many as the mothers of French immersion, and businessman John Rae are being honoured with QCGN’s 10th annual Sheila and Victor Goldbloom Community Service Award. Hayley Campbell has been chosen for the fourth annual Young Quebecers Leading the Way Award.

“The leadership, vision and other qualities provided by these award winners have provided an enduring positive impact across our Community of Communities,” QCGN President Geoffrey Chambers said. “As with every QCGN award winner, their individual dedication, persistence and hard work has served to sustain, strengthen and empower us all.”

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Celebrating movers and shakers in Quebec

CBC is proud to partner with the Quebec Community Groups Network for the tenth edition of the Sheila and Victor Goldbloom Distinguished Community Service Award.

The award honours individuals who have gone above and beyond in contributing to the vitality and reputation of the English-speaking community.

On Nov. 1,  four inspirational leaders of the English-speaking community are being celebrated.

The event will be emceed by CBC Montreal weekend anchor Sean Henry. (CBC)

Murielle Parkes and Olga Melikoff, known to many as the mothers of French immersion, and businessman John Rae are being honoured with Sheila and Victor Goldbloom Community Service Awards. Hayley Campbell has been chosen for the fourth annual Young Quebecers Leading the Way Award, which recognizes the outstanding achievements of English-speaking Quebecers under the age of 30.

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No designated minister for anglophones as Quebec premier vows to take on portfolio himself

‘It’s not a bad arrangement,’ says president of Anglo lobby group, the Quebec Community Groups Network.

Premier François Legault has not appointed a minister responsible for relations with English-speaking Quebecers — instead, taking on the position himself.

Legault, a former sovereignist, plans to handle the portfolio in conjunction with his role as premier and minister responsible for youth issues.

He has assigned Laval MNA Christopher Skeete to be his parliamentary secretary, charged with overseeing the province’s Secretariat for relations with English-speaking Quebecers.

Legault addressed anglophone Quebecers at his swearing-in ceremony, saying in English he plans to “govern in a respectful manner with the historical anglophone community.”

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Will anglos have a voice in government under François Legault’s plan?

As the former minister responsible for relations with English-speaking Quebecers, Kathleen Weil said the eradication of the ministerial position under the new government represents a step back for the English community.

Newly sworn-in Quebec Premier François Legault announced Thursday he would take responsibility for the dossier, and was naming Laval MNA Christopher Skeete as his parliamentary assistant, responsible for the Secretariat for relations with English-speaking Quebecers.

“The fact Premier Legault is taking on responsibility for relations with English-speaking Quebecers, I think it sends a positive message to the community,” Weil said. But as someone who served as a minister for eight years, Weil said she has seen first-hand how decisions and policies are made, and a ministerial position is crucial.

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Is it time to give more teeth to Canada’s Official Languages Act?

Is it time to give more teeth to Canada’s Official Languages Act? Many experts think so, and some suggest the creation of an administrative tribunal.

The Fédération canadienne des communautés francophones et acadienne (FCFA) disagrees.

“The history of this Act is the story of half a century of infractions and of an incomplete implementation”, commented FCFA President Jean Johnson last spring while testifying before the Senate Standing Committee on Official Languages.

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QCGN president worries about how new government could impact minorities

Geoffrey Chambers of the Quebec Community Groups Network joins senior anchor Jamie Orchard to discuss how CAQ policies, especially the banning of religious symbols, could have a negative impact on minority groups in the province.

Watch the interview

QCGN honours French immersion pioneers

Murielle Parkes and Olga Melikoff, two of the parents who pushed more than 50 years ago to establish French immersion in St. Lambert, are getting recognition for their efforts with a prize from the Quebec Community Groups Network.

Listen to the interview on a All in a Weekend Montreal with Ainslie MacLellan

What if you call an election and the non-francophones don’t show up?

With the exception of the anglophone-rights Equality Party in 1989, Jacob Hughes has always put an X next to the Liberal candidate on provincial ballots.

Not this time.

In last week’s election, there was no X at all because he stayed home.

“The (Coalition Avenir Québec) was getting in and the Liberal was going to win here, so why should I bother?” said Hughes, 64.

He was speaking as he put groceries into his trunk in the parking lot of the Côte-St-Luc shopping centre, which straddles the D’Arcy-McGee and Notre-Dame-de-Grace ridings, two of 13 where less than half the population speaks French at home.

The Liberals turned their backs on anglophones and didn’t deserve his vote anyway, Hughes said, citing the party’s decision to “tell people they can’t say ‘Hi’ in a store.”

Hughes is one of the reasons voter turnout plummeted among non-francophones on Oct. 1.

What happened?

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Quebec ban on religious symbols would be ‘catastrophic’: anglo groups

Disturbing, disruptive, divisive, catastrophic.

Those are some of the words the head of a network of Quebec anglophone groups used Friday to describe the incoming Coalition Avenir Québec government’s plan to ban the wearing of religious symbols on the job by public employees in positions of authority.

Under Premier-designate François Legault’s proposed new law, which he said Friday he would try to get passed in his first year, elementary and high school teachers, police officers, prosecutors, judges and prison guards would have to remove their Muslim hijab, Jewish kippa or Sikh turban or lose their jobs.

“If they actually did it, it would be catastrophic, seriously tearing the community apart,” Geoffrey Chambers, president of the Quebec Community Groups Network, told the Montreal Gazette.

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