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This week on Focus Montreal: Jan. 23

This file photo shows a school board meeting in progress. Bill 86, would do away with school boards as we know them. David Birnbaum, former executive director of the English School Board Association and current Liberal MNA for D’Arcy McGee, supports the proposed bill. Sunday, Jan. 24, 2016. Staff/ Global News

MONTREAL — Focus Montreal introduces Montrealers to people who are shaping our community, bringing their stories into focus.

It airs on Saturday at 5:30 p.m. and on Sunday at 7:30 a.m., 11:30 a.m. and at midnight.

Take a look at who we’re meeting this week on Focus Montreal:

Click to play video 'Focus Montreal: David Birnbaum on Bill 86' Focus Montreal: David Birnbaum on Bill 86
Focus Montreal: David Birnbaum on Bill 86 – Jan 24, 2016

Bill 86

The English-speaking community has been expressing loud concern with Bill 86. The Liberal government’s proposed bill would do away with school boards as we know them.

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At issue for many anglophones, is the constitutional right to govern their own institutions.

Many trusted leaders in the community have complained that the bill violates those rights.

But David Birnbaum, former executive director of the Quebec English School Board’s Association and former executive director of Alliance Quebec, is a dissenting voice.

The current Liberal MNA for D’arcy McGee and Assembly assistant to Premier Philippe Couillard sat down with Global News senior anchor Jamie Orchard to explain why he supports the bill.

Click to play video 'Focus Montreal: WICA Celebrates 40 years in the community' Focus Montreal: WICA Celebrates 40 years in the community
Focus Montreal: WICA Celebrates 40 years in the community – Jan 24, 2016

WICA celebrates 40 years

A Montreal-area institution that helps some of society’s most vulnerable people is marking an impressive anniversary this year.

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 (WICA) is an organization that matches volunteers with people living with physical or mental disabilities, isolated seniors, or others who may be disadvantaged.

It was started in Pointe Claire 40 years ago, by Joanne Farley, the mother of a child with a handicap. Now, four decades later, WICA serves about 700 vulnerable people in the community through a variety of programs.

WICA’s director Marie Fournier and board member Margo Heron, speak about the organization’s 40 years in the community and plans to mark the milestone anniversary.

Click to play video 'Focus Montreal: Black History Month' Focus Montreal: Black History Month
Focus Montreal: Black History Month – Jan 24, 2016

Black History Month

Rise and Shine. That is the theme for this year’s Black History Month in Montreal.

Festivities kicked off this week at City Hall with a song that names three shining stars in Montreal history.

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This is the 25th edition of Black History Month in Montreal. There will be more than 150 activities, including film screenings, a business seminar and  a blood drive.

The underlying theme is the achievement of Black communities.

Michael P. Farkas, president of Black History Month, stopped by Focus Montreal to discuss some of the highlights.

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