Anglo mayor warns of discord, chaos
Anthony Housefather, the mayor of Cote-St-Luc, has told a National Assembly committee that revoking the bilingual status of his municipality will ignite a fury of protest.
"You are going to have chaos. You are going to have opposition like you could never believe with people in the streets," he said.
Housefather and the mayor of Mont-Royal, Philippe Roy, both spoke for the Association of Suburban municipalities.
They told the committee hearing bill 14 that the bilingual status of some municipalities was a right that they would not negotiate.
"The English community founded the city (Mont-Royal). The English community build it. They are still enormously involved, even if they are no longer the majority," says Roy.
Housefather says he hasn't seen this level of fear since the forced mergers. "And the message they got from Bill 14 was, we're not respected anymore in Quebec. We're being treated now as a problem for Quebec."
Minister Diane De Courcy pointed out that the municipalities in question did not go through a process to see whether citizens want to keep it.
"I understand very well that there was no formal public consultations at any point in our history concerning bilingual status. You presume that choice based on your experience," she says.
Housefather and Philippe both responded that they know their clientele.
Housefather said there was never any consultation on whether a municipality would become unilingual either.
"If you go to the borough of NDG-CDN, you will find a large majority of people who will tell you they want bilingual status as well," he said.
"Yes, I so," De Courcy said.
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