It will begin with a rally at Dawson College at 10 am Protesters will then march to Premier François Legault’s Montreal office.

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It will begin with a rally at Dawson College at 3040 Sherbrooke St. W. at 10 am Protesters will march to Premier François Legault’s Montreal office at Sherbrooke and McGill College Ave.

The protest is against Bill 96, the Quebec government’s plan to amend the province’s French language charter.

Opponents say the proposed law would restrict access to several government services — including health care, justice and education — based on language.

“As it stands, Bill 96 will reduce and restrict access to education, health care, justice and government services in English,” said the Quebec Community Groups Network, which is one of the organizers of the rally. “Pre-emptively setting aside protections in both the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms and Quebec Charter of Human Rights and Freedoms, this divisive and corrosive legislation represents the most sweeping override of human rights and freedoms in modern Quebec and Canadian history.”

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The law gives increased powers to the Office québécois de la langue française, the province’s language watchdog, such as the power to search and seize without a warrant. It would also restrict service in English in health-care institutions and the courts.

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It limits the number of francophone and allophone students who can attend English CEGEPs and more than doubles the number of French-language courses that students at English CEGEPs will have to complete to graduate.

Legault has defended Bill 96 as realistic, balanced and necessary to protect French. He said the rights of the English community will be respected if it becomes law. The vote to adopt Bill 96 is expected before the National Assembly recesses for the summer June 10.


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