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  • Hannah Sabourin

CAQ: Anglos don’t have to fear Bill 96

Robert Bussière, the incumbent Member of the National Assembly (MNA) for the constituency of Gatineau, said that despite Bill 96 and the restricted access to education in the province, residents will “always have the right to send their children to English schools.”

Speaking with the Low Down during his campaign launch on Aug. 31, Bussière said that his party’s Bill 96 will not affect the English minority in Quebec.

According to Bill 96, non-historic Anglophones will not have the right to choose where to send their kids for education. There will also be caps on enrolment at English CEGEPS.

This law also restricts what languages are spoken in businesses with over 25 employees. Bill 96 gives l’Office québécoise de la langue française the right to seize documents from a company without a warrant to ensure that workers aren’t breaking any laws about Bill 96 French.

Bussière stated, “Knowing a second language is important for everyone,” and said he is open to speaking with everyone in his constituency, explaining that he often delves into political discussions with both francophones and anglophones.

Yet, in May, the bilingual candidate and former La Pêche mayor refused to meet with Bill 96 protestors. On May 20, 2022, Bill 96 protesters attended Bussière’s press conference in Masham. They showed up with signs denouncing new language laws. Bussière refused to speak with protestors, staying inside the La Pêche community centre until the group of protesters dispersed.