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Quebecers protest Ford government’s cuts to French language services

Quebecers are among the thousands protesting in Ottawa against the Ontario government’s decision to cut French-language services.

The crowd includes members of Quebec’s Liberal party and leaders of the Quebec Community Groups Network (QCGN), a non-profit representing 56 English-language community organizations across Quebec.

“We want to send a solidarity message and to tell the government of Ontario that this public relations problem they created for themselves is not going to end until they fix the problem,” said QCGN president Geoffrey Chambers.

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Focus Montreal: Minority language rights

Geoffrey Chambers of the Quebec Community Groups Network joins Global News’ Andrea Howick to discuss how the cutting of French services in Ontario is touching all linguistic minorities.

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Cuts to Ontario francophones touch all linguistic minorities: Quebec group

MONTREAL — An organization representing Quebec anglophones says linguistic minorities across the country stand to lose from Ontario’s recent moves to cut funding to institutions serving francophones.

The head of the Quebec Community Groups Network, which represents more than 50 anglophone groups across the province, said the Ontario moves are “a step backwards” after years of gains.

Geoffrey Chambers, the network president, said the trend for linguistic minorities in Canada “had been to establish new and better services — just last year a francophone advisory council was put in place in Alberta, and we got our secretariat (in Quebec). The trend line had been good for quite a long time.”

Ontario was held up as a model for other minority linguistic groups in Canada with its French Language Services Act, an office of francophone affairs and a French language services commissioner to ensure rights are respected — a position Chambers would like to see in Quebec.

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QCGN Denounces Cuts to French Language Services in Ontario

QCGN Denounces Cuts to French Language Services in Ontario

Montreal – November 15, 2018 – The Quebec Community Groups Network condemns the decision by Ontario’s Conservative government to abolish the Office of the French Language Services Commissioner and cancel plans to create a new French-language university.

“The QCGN has looked to Ontario as a model for how an official language minority community should be treated,” said QCGN President Geoffrey Chambers.

He said Ontario has provided an effective example for the rest of Canada: a French Language Services Act, which is intended to protect the rights of Franco-Ontarians; an Office of Francophone Affairs that ensures Franco-Ontarians receive government services in French so they can participate in the social, economic and political life of the province; as well as a French Language Services Commissioner to ensure those rights are respected.

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QCGN Looks Forward to Working Together with Premier François Legault and his new cabinet

QCGN Looks Forward to Working Together with Premier François Legault and his new cabinet

Our community also looks forward to working with Christopher Skeete, the new Parliamentary Assistant in charge of the Secretariat for Relations


Montreal – October 18, 2018 – The Quebec Community Groups Network applauds Coalition Avenir Québec leader François Legault, who was sworn in as Quebec’s 32nd Premier on Thursday and looks forward to working with the new Premier and his new cabinet on key issues such as health and education.

QCGN President Geoffrey Chambers also extended the Network’s congratulations to Sainte-Rose MNA Christopher Skeete, who will be the voice of English-speaking Quebecers in Legault’s government. Switching to English halfway through his speech following the swearing-in ceremony, Premier Legault announced that Skeete will become Parliamentary Assistant in charge of the Secretariat for Relations with English-speaking Quebecers.

“We offer our assistance to Skeete and the new CAQ government so that they can better understand and represent the interests of English-speaking Quebecers across the province,” Chambers said, remarking that the QCGN has a variety of other immediate concerns, including the implementation of legislative guarantees that ensure access to health and social services and the future of English school boards.

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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.

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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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What Is in Store for Anglophones?

In an interview with Caroline Van Vlaardingen of CTV Montreal, Quebec Community Groups Network President Geoffrey Chambers said the community will be keeping a close eye on the new Coalition Avenir Québec government, ensuring that the concerns of English-speaking Quebecers are not ignored.

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Community Groups Network reacts to ‘historic’ CAQ win

City News’ Tina Tenneriello speaks with QCGN President Geoffrey Chambers on the election night results.

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Your Vote: Montreal’s Community Groups

City News’ Tina Tenneriello speaks with QCGN President Geoffrey Chambers on the importance of the English-speaking vote on election day.

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