Montreal and special interest groups’ reactions mixed after Quebec budget

An unexpected area of funding was the $4 million for English-speaking Quebecers, money the Quebec Community Group Network (QCGN) expects to help get English speakers better access to government services.

“To gather actual statistical data that can be used to determine where the gaps are, where we need help,” said QCGN president Marlene Jennings.

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Opinion : Bilingual Juges… Almost

In this opinion piece by Patrice Garant, a public law professor, explains the principle of judicial independence mentioned by former Quebec Court Judge Claude Laporte in a recent article. M. Garant also supports the constitutional right Quebec citizens have to use either French or English in courts.

Langue française : Appuyons Simon Jolin-Barrette et Mélanie Joly!

BILINGUISME INSTITUTIONNEL

Alors que tout le monde s’entend sur l’importance de renforcer le français, vouloir imposer systématiquement le bilinguisme aux juges francophones de districts majoritairement francophones, sous prétexte que certains de leurs résidants sont anglophones, laisse pantois.

Rappelons que cela aurait pour effet d’interdire aux avocats unilingues francophones d’accéder à la magistrature dans la plus grande partie du Québec.

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Corey Hoare: To be Free to Protest in your Own Language

To focus on the language of protest placards when they are written in English is merely a side issue and a distraction when the premier of the province continues to minimize systemic discrimination as a fact of Quebec life, writes Corey Hoare, a Montreal university admissions administrator.

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UnpublishedTV: Is the French Language in decline in Quebec?  

(VIDEO) The Quebec Community Groups Network (QCGN) is uncomfortable with the direction the federal government has chosen regarding proposed changes to the Official Languages Act, QCGN Board member Eva Ludvig says during a videocast panel discussion on Unpublished TV.

“What is being introduced is really changing the dynamics between English-and French-speaking people in this country and changing a pillar of Canadian society,” Ludvig says. The nation’s sustained effort over more than half a century to create a balance with the two official languages, English and French, has used “an equal basis” as one of its policy cornerstones, she adds. Now, the changes proposed by Ottawa have in effect “really relegated the English language and the English-speaking minority in Quebec… to a lesser status,” Ludvig adds: “That is not what official languages is about, not what the country has bought into, nor what it has celebrated.”

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No parades? No problem: Here are a few St. Patrick’s Day events going on in Quebec

For the second year in a row, the usual St. Patrick’s Day merrymaking is being curtailed by the pandemic

Normally at this time of year, St. Patrick’s Day celebrations would be in full swing. But for the second year in a row, COVID-19 has curtailed many plans for in-person merrymaking.

We’ll have to wait at least another year for the parades to return. In the meantime, event organizers across the province have come up with a few ways for revellers to celebrate this year.

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Families launch grassroots movement to save Montreal’s Fulford Residence

Families with loved ones living at the Fulford Residence for women were shocked to learn that the home is closing in September due to financial difficulties. Now in a race against the clock, Christopher Holcroft, whose 76-year-old mother lives at the residence on Guy Street, has started a movement to fight the reallocation.

“During a pandemic, after everything that the families have been through, it’s cruel,” Holcroft said.

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How a local organization is empowering Black youth

The agency was born out of DESTA Black Youth Network — a non-profit Montreal community group founded in 2006 that aims to reduce individual and systemic barriers to employment for Black youth.

It offers professional services in graphic and web design, communications and marketing.

CBC Montreal had the chance to speak to DESTA graphic designer Kamden Biggart and multidisciplinary designer Peeta Chery, both of whom worked on the Black Changemakers project.

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There is a literacy helpline for English-speaking Quebecers

Literacy Quebec has unveiled a free Literacy Helpline (1-888-521-8181) to help adult English speakers connect with their provincial network of literacy organizations in February 2021. Their support comes at a time when an easy access route to resources is more important than ever with so many people stuck at home alone or trying to support their children with distance learning.

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No place to go or hide: A deeper look into how vulnerable Montreal women are trying to survive

With the pandemic entering its second year and tight restrictions still in place in Montreal, women who are experiencing poverty, homelessness and domestic violence have had to face the additional burden of a relentless public health crisis over the past 12 months.

The city, which has been hard hit by COVID-19 since last March, has been thrashed by the first and second waves of the virus — with a staggering number of infections, deaths and hospitalizations prompting lockdowns and a virtual emptying out of the once bustling downtown core.

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You’re hired! Now stay home. New recruits navigate the pandemic working world

Feeling pressured to overperform and prove himself is something 27-year-old Jama Jama can relate to, especially after landing a temporary job in October as an administrative clerk.

He describes it as “feeling stuck, feeling that it’s never enough, like most students or people of my generation.”

He’s been working remotely during the pandemic since graduating in May 2020 from Concordia University’s political science program.

As an extrovert, he’s found it challenging.

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You can sign up for a free webinar series to learn about your language rights in Quebec

If you’re a new or long-time Quebec resident and have ever wondered what exactly is the deal with your language rights in this province, a free webinar series hosted by the Quebec Community Groups Network (QCGN) might just be the thing for you.

Starting on Thursday, March 11, the first webinar in the series, “Language Rights and the English-speaking Community of Quebec,” will feature guest speaker Marion Sandilands, a lawyer who, according to the event description, participated in a “landmark” case involving minority language education rights.

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Language, cultural barriers could fuel vaccine hesitancy, Quebec community organizers warn

Quebecers have rarely gone a week without hearing from their premier at least twice during this pandemic. What’s allowed, what isn’t, the exceptions to the rules — instructions from the province have changed at a dizzying pace, even for experts and journalists whose job it is to keep up.

But many of those who do not understand François Legault’s predominantly French-language news conferences, or other material put out by the province, turn to community groups to get the latest information in their own language.

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Speed-dating for Montreal jobs

(VIDEO) “For me the reality right now is a whole lot different. I’ve lowered my standards,” says an English-speaking Black Montrealer about her job search during the pandemic. Sacha Obas has more.

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Language reforms loom, are we ready?

Did you know that Bill 101, Quebec’s French-first language law, is set to be overhauled in 2021, and promises to be even more restrictive of minority languages in the province? Probably not — there are bigger things dominating the news and people’s personal lives these days. But in the midst of the biggest health crisis of a century, the CAQ government decided in September to take $5 million from its budget and spend it on beefing up the OQLF, also known as the language police.

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