Bill 10 amendments don’t go far enough: QCGN

MONTREAL — While the parliamentary committee examining Bill 10 resumed hearings in Quebec City Friday, the Quebec Community Groups Network is critical of the Liberal government, saying the amendments don’t go far enough to protect the province’s English-language institutions.

This is the first time QCGN has spoken out about Bill 10 since the amendments were first presented in the National Assembly in December.

Executive Director Sylvia Martin-Laforge told Global News that further amendments are necessary.

“We want the Minister and the Ministry to ensure that the English-speaking institutions that we have built over the last 150 years are maintained and that the community maintains their ownership and control over them,” said Martin-Laforge.

Bill 10 is Health Minister Gaetan Barrette’s ambitious undertaking to streamline health care in the province. It abolishes the 18 regional health agencies and merges 180 health and social service centres into 280 mega centres.

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It was first introduced last September with public consultations taking place in the fall. Initially, English-speaking community organizations complained they were not being heard by the parliamentary hearings but the committee finally made room for Townshippers and Voice of English-speaking Quebec.

Barrette promised to address the concerns of the English-speaking community in the amendments presented in early December, but many say he has not gone far enough.

For more on this story watch Elysia Bryan-Baynes’ interview with Gary Whittaker, chairman of the board of the West Montreal Readaptation Centre on Focus Montreal Saturday, Jan. 15, 2015 at 7:30 p.m.

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