Quebec is backing down on cultural security

On the first anniversary of Joyce Echaquan’s death on Tuesday, the Quebec government refused to commit to including cultural security in law by December, relying instead on its willingness to do “right things.” in order “.

Last March, the Minister responsible for Native Affairs, Ian Lafrenière, said he wanted to include this notion in the law “very soon”. He then reacted to the testimonies of three indigenous women. who related to To have to episodes of racism at the Joliette hospital after the death of Ms. Echaquan.

Also in March, the National Assembly adopted a motion to Solidarity Quebec which provided for the adoption of an “orientation and [d’]a clear commitment to the concept of cultural security ”, together with the“ necessary funding ”. This engagement followed the unveiling another case of discrimination against an Atikamekw woman in Joliette.

However, on Tuesday, the government refused a motion by PQ member Véronique Hivon which proposed to recognize the principle of cultural security and to integrate it into the Act respecting health services and social services “Before the end of this parliamentary session”, on December 10.

“We are not against the proposal of Ms. Hivon,” then said the office of Minister of Health, Christian Dubé. “Out of respect for parliamentarians and indigenous communities, we are doing things in order,” wrote press secretary Marjaurie Côté-Boileau, specifying that a “bill” containing this notion does not have “Yet” been filed.

Partisan discussions at the Salon Bleu

The first anniversary of Joyce Echaquan’s death also gave rise to partisan discussions at the Salon Bleu. The Liberal Party and Québec solidaire notably urged the Legault government to recognize systemic racism. They referred to reports on forced sterilization of indigenous women, discrimination in access to housing or the impossibility, for some Natives, of being insured by large companies on “reserves”.

“This is not the time to divide Quebecers with certain words”, replied the Prime Minister, Francois Legault, when the solidarity member Gabriel Nadeau-Dubois criticized him for being “reluctant to recognize systemic racism”. In his past experiences as Minister of Education and Health, he said he had “never seen a system […] who was racist ”. “On the other hand, I saw people who were racist,” he then declared. “This is not acceptable and we must continue to fight against it rather than dividing Quebecers,” he also suggested.

“The most important thing in this story is not what the Prime Minister saw or did not see,” replied Mr. Nadeau-Dubois. This is what the First Nations live in institutions when they attend them. And what these people tell us is that they and they feel, they experience this discrimination, this systemic racism. “

Prime Minister Legault also answered a question on systemic racism and the recognition of Joyce’s principle – which the government does not want to adopt since it requires recognition of systemic racism – by attacking Liberal MP Greg Kelley.

“I agree with Joyce’s principle. Where I have a problem is when we see a video of the member for Jacques-Cartier who makes an amalgamation between Joyce Echaquan ”and Bill 96 on the French language, launched Mr. Legault.

“I am outraged that the Prime Minister chooses this question, this question on Joyce’s principle, on the reality that the aboriginal peoples live in Quebec, on the reality that these seven children live there. [de Mme Echaquan] to attack the conduct of a member who has absolutely nothing to be ashamed of, ”replied Liberal leader André Fortin.

In the video, Mr. Kelley attacks the Bills onimmigration and the secularism of the state, before denouncing the government’s refusal to recognize systemic racism in the wake of the death of Joyce Echaquan. “And let me add some more,” he said. [Il y a] Bill 96, where the notwithstanding clause is still used to restrict and take away rights. “

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