Language activist denounces cancelled Dawson College expansion project

By Michael Boriero - Local Journalism Initiative
Language activist denounces cancelled Dawson College expansion project
(Photo : Giovanni Bisciglia)

When news started to spread about the Quebec government’s decision to walk back on a promise to invest $100 million into an expansion project at Dawson College in Montreal, Giovanni Bisciglia was unsurprised, calling it another shot at the English-speaking community.

“They’re targeting the English institutions and that has to stop. I understand protecting and preserving the French language, but you don’t preserve an elephant by killing off all of the lions, and that’s what they’re basically out doing right now,” he said in a phone interview.

The expansion project has been in the works for several years. Although it is the largest cegep in Quebec, Dawson suffers from a lack of space. Diane Gauvin, the cegep’s director general, has stated that it needs an additional 11,200 square metres to accommodate all of its students.

However, Premier François Legault had different ideas, choosing to divert the massive investment into infrastructure projects for French institutions. Bisciglia, a social service technician and two-time Dawson graduate, said Legault has drawn a line in the sand.
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