For Immediate Distribution
SHERBROOKE, January 18, 2017 – Townshippers’ Association is profoundly disappointed in Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s refusal to answer questions in English at the town hall meeting held in Sherbrooke on Tuesday evening. More than just a slight of a minority community, the Prime Minister’s reaction is discouraging and deeply concerning.
“In light of Prime Minister Trudeau’s response to English-speakers at the Sherbrooke town hall and his refusal to answer a Franco-Ontarian at an event in Peterborough, we have to question if this signals major policy changes to the duality of Canada’s official languages,” expressed Townshippers’ Association President Gerald Cutting. “If all Canadians are equal then at least we deserve an answer in our own language.”
“The position taken by the Prime Minister undermines our community’s development, vitality and it calls into question our place as valued contributors and equal partners in Quebec society,” added Townshippers’ Executive Director Rachel Hunting. “We would expect the Prime Minister would be an ally to all Canadians regardless of which part of the country he is visiting. The marginalization of your community by the highest level of government damages years of progress and collaborations, and drives a wedge that had been loosened, between the English and French-speaking communities.”
Townshippers’ Association, a non-profit, non-partisan community organization that has been serving the English-speaking community of the historical Eastern Townships since 1979, will remain vigilant and will support the mobilization of our community by the Quebec Community Groups Network (QCGN) around these very important issues. The Association also encourages the valued members of Quebec’s English-speaking community to ensure their voice is heard by contacting their local Member of Parliament.
For more on the Association and its activities, connect online at Townshippers.org or contact Townshippers’ in Sherbrooke at 100 – 257 Queen St. 819-566-5717, toll free: 1-866-566-5717 or in Lac-Brome at 3-584 Knowlton Rd. 450-242-4421, toll free: 1-877-242-4421.
Communications Officer, Townshippers’ Association
819-566-5717 (toll free 1-866-566-5717), [email protected]