Newsbriefs

Last updated April 16, 1998




English Software Banned

April 16, 1998

Bringing the province of Quebec one step closer to being a fascist state, the Office de la Langue Francaise (commonly known as the Language Police) have begun attacking companies who use English language software in the office.

Threatening to withdraw "francization" certificates from businesses, they insisted that companies with more than 50 employees begin installing french software onto their computers, even if employees prefer the english versions. Official permission from the office must be obtained before allowing any other language to be installed, which would only be granted in exceptional circumstances.

OLF spokesperson Gerald Paquette believes that french language software is integral to a french working environment, which his office is mandated to enforce.

Companies are now worried that productivity will decline over the next few months, as employees get used to the french software.




Chief Electoral Officer Drops Unity-rally Charges

October 17, 1997

Quebec's Chief Electoral Officer has officially dropped all 20 charges against 11 organizations and 2 individuals involved in the 1995 Candian Unity Rally.

This moves comes after a Supreme Court of Canada ruling deemed Quebec's referendum law unconsitutional.

The charges in question were laid against pro-federalists who organized groups of people to attend the rally on the weekend prior to the referendum. Pierre F. Cote, Quebec's CEO, charges that cut-rate bus and plane tickets and other organizational costs of individuals and organizations were not factored into the offical No committee's costs.

The old referendum law made it illegal for any group or individual to spend any amount of money that would influence either side of the question. Cote claimed that transportation costs to arrive in Montreal for the rally fell under that law.


Victory For Freedom of Speech in Quebec

October 9, 1997

A Supreme Court of Canada ruling has declared Quebec's referendum law prohibiting third party spending unconstitutional earlier today.

The law, created by former seperatist leader Rene Levesque, forbids any group or individual apart from official parties from spending money to promote any one side of the question.

In the last referendum, the law was unfairly applied to fine Canadians travelling to Quebec to voice their opinions at a Unity Rally, which attracted over 100,000 supporters. Seperatists claimed that their travelling expenses ought to have been declared on the NO committee's spending report. Under the new ruling, those fined under the unfair law will receive an automatic aquittal.

The Supreme Court ruled unanimously that this law is unconstitutional violating the guarantee to freedom of expression.

Seperatist leader Lucien Bouchard called the ruling undemocratic, and has not yet ruled out the option of invoking the notwithstanding clause.


Volunteer Language Police Hit Township Hospitals

October 8, 1997

A group that calls themselves Le Mouvement Estrien Pour le Français have been attacking hospitals who provide services to their patients in English.

The volunteer organization who boasts a membership of over 50 individuals has been seeking language violations in hospitals recently.

They don't take credit, however, for recent spottings of violations reported to the OLF over hand made signs that read "Emergency Admissions". Those were reports filed by "ordinary citizens," Rodrigue Larose, the group's vice-president, told the Montreal Gazette.

"Make no mistake," he insisted, "loose-leaf scribbling is one sure step on the road to full-fledged signs made by professional sign-makers."

MEF members oppose regulations that require hospital and clinic staff to be bilingual, saying that it discriminates against french speaking people. While they don't support an outright ban on the use of english in hospitals, they see no reason why bilingual staff can't handle the english patients, while unilingual french speakers can handle everyone else.

Jacques Poisson, the MEF's president and founder, complained that the group was being made out to be composed of "fanatics and narrow-minded bigots."


QCC Files Complaint Against Villeneuve

September 25, 1997

The Quebec Committee for Canada has filed a complaint against Raymond Villeneuve, former FLQ member and instigator of the confrontation outside City Hall in LaSalle last Monday.

A representative of the group told reporters that Villeneuve had made several threats against partition supporters, and that he has publicly advocated violence.

Villeneuve has indeed warned the partitionists of a possible war if they do not stop their movement, and that they would "send commandos to attack partitionist demonstrations".

Public Security Minister Pierre Bélanger has also suggested that a complaint be filed with the Surete de Quebec, because of threats of violence against the partitionists.

Meanwhile, Daniel Johnson, leader of the Quebec Liberal Party has denounced Villeneuve's actions, calling them undemocratic.


Seperatists Aim to Threaten Freedom with War

September 23, 1997

A confrontation broke out on Monday, September 22 between supporters of partition and seperatists in LaSalle, a municipality on the south side of the island of Montreal in Quebec.

Raymond Villeneuve, a convicted terrorist and leader of the Mouvement de Liberation Nationale du Quebec led 50 of his followers to a demonstration by partitionists outside of City Hall in hopes of a confrontation.

Villeneuve, once imprisoned for the death of a security guard during the first wave of FLQ terrorist bombings in the 1960s, warned that his group would be willing to use violent tactics once again if partitionist efforts do not stop.

He told the Montreal Gazette, "We'll send commandos to attack the partitionist demonstrations. We're ready to fight. We're not afraid of confrontation and war."

Meanwhile, his followers chanted, "Canadians go home" and "Death to partitionists".

"They should know," Villeneuve said, "that partition leads to war."

Partitionists were in LaSalle to urge the city's major to pass a unity resolution, which he has thus far refused to do despite city wide support for Canadian Unity. The group is in favor of allowing cities within the Province of Quebec to remain Canadian should the seperatists win the next referendum.

The confrontation resulted in no major injuries, although one federalist carrying a Canadian flag was knocked to the ground and roughed up on his way into City Hall before police intervened.




Home