Bill 96 hearing leaves fundamental questions unanswered

Bill 96 hearing leaves fundamental  questions unanswered

By Matthew McCully

The Quebec Community Groups Network (QCGN) tabled a brief on Tuesday afternoon at the National Assembly’s special hearings on Bill 96, An Act respecting French, the official and common language of Québec.
One of four groups representing English speakers invited to the hearings, President Marlene Jennings presented QCGN’s position, saying the bill should be withdrawn in its entirety, and highlighted major concerns about proposed amendments to the constitution and the preemptive use of the notwithstanding clause.
While MNA Simon Joiln-Barrette, who sponsored the bill, gave assurance the English-speaking community and other minorities would be protected and embraced as part of the Quebec Nation, Jennings said she left the hearing without the answers she was looking for.
During the hearing, Jennings pointed out that the English community is very much on board with protecting French. “We have ideas, it’s our community that created immersion, and made the effort to learn French. Our youth are more bilingual,” the QCGN president said.
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