Updates from August, 2020 Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • Kate 18:15 on 2020-08-31 Permalink | Reply  

    Two cops who stopped and arrested a Black motorist in 2017 for no valid reason have been suspended without pay for 13 days, but the victim in the case says the punishment is too light. Not only did the officers arrest Kenrick McRae, they deleted his video record of their actions.

    • Ephraim 20:52 on 2020-08-31 Permalink

      That’s the problem… the standard punishment is days off with no pay. That’s not a punishment, that’s unpaid vacation days. I fine equal to their pay or community service (community outreach) might be a good start. Oh… and deleting all the data on their personal phones.

    • Raymond Lutz 22:44 on 2020-08-31 Permalink

    • Jack 11:29 on 2020-09-01 Permalink

    • Ephraim 13:50 on 2020-09-01 Permalink

      @Jack – Good question. Quebec law usually requires union membership for negotiation purposes. I think a better way to handle this question is to ask, should unions be held accountable for the actions of their members and the liability they incur if they violate procedures, laws or guidelines. In other words, when there is wrongdoing and the city gets sued, should the city be allowed to sue the policeman or the union who violated the laws and guidelines set forth.

      I want to use as an example, Patrick Guay and Pierre-Luc Furlotte, the two policemen who took a homeless man to almost the Ontario border and dumped him there. They were charged with forcible confinement, assault and uttering threats. What they weren’t charged with… stealing. Yes, stealing. They were being paid as police officers to be in their district on patrol at the time. They stole the car, because it was NOT authorized to be outside of SPVM territory. They stole gasoline, because they used the car for non-police business. They stole salary, because they weren’t doing their job at the time. They stole insurance, wear and tear on the vehicle, insurance, maintenance. They are finally facing criminal charges, but not for their violation of the duties, only for what they did. And yet, they violated the public trust. And what of Costa Labos, who hushed up the incident…. as far as I can tell, he’s suspended WITH PAY since August of 2017. A three year PAID vacation.

      So, should WE the public be allowed to sue the union, who’s protecting him, when and if he’s found guilty? Because frankly… I want that money back. I’m paying higher taxes for this guy to be on a PAID vacation.

    • Kate 15:44 on 2020-09-02 Permalink

      Ephraim, funny you should mention Costa Labos. He’s in the news again (I’ll be doing a post about this).

  • Kate 18:06 on 2020-08-31 Permalink | Reply  

    The walking and cycling path on the Jacques-Cartier bridge is to stay open all winter – at least, that’s the plan, after a successful pilot project last winter. But we all know that things that sound possible in August can become ludicrously impossible in January, depending on the weather. We’re all prone to a little seasonal amnesia.

    • Ian 18:08 on 2020-08-31 Permalink

      May they clear it as regularly as the sidewalks in a working class neighbourhood.

    • Chris 19:36 on 2020-08-31 Permalink

      Ian, you know, some working class people can’t afford a car, and cycling is even more affordable than public transport. Why the disdain for clearing a couple of km of bikeways in addition to the 1000s of km of roads and sidewalks we already clear?

    • Ian 08:03 on 2020-09-01 Permalink

      Working class people are probably more concerned about he fact that their neighbourhoods are the last to get the sidewalks cleared in winter than whether a bike path is open all year. Have you ever been to the Point in wintertime?

    • Kate 10:54 on 2020-09-01 Permalink

      In a recent job I had to pass through the Point in winter – it was cleared, but not quickly, and not very completely.

    • Sprocket 11:05 on 2020-09-01 Permalink

      I lived in the Point for two years and thought the snow clearing was very good. As I did in Verdun and now CDN. Try the ROC or NY State. Each homeowner is responsible to clear the sidewalk and many are not good at it.

    • Ian 12:37 on 2020-09-01 Permalink

      While it’s true that otherwhere people have to clear their own places, you don’t have to go all the way to Toronto to see how crappy sidewalk clearing is when it’s not done by the city – you can just go to Vendôme metro in January.

      I still go to the Point pretty regularly to visit friends (Charlevoix and Wellington) and while you may think it’s “very good” I wouldn’t want to rely on it if I were commuting by bicycle. By comparison, in MIle End snow clearing is done almost immediately.

    • CE 12:51 on 2020-09-01 Permalink

      I Have lived in Mile End and Parc Ex over the last two years. I’ve found that the snow clearing in Parc Ex has been much faster and more complete. Mile End is a lot cleaner in the summer though.

    • MarcG 13:02 on 2020-09-01 Permalink

      If I remember correctly the company that was doing the snow in the Sud-Ouest borough was changed recently, perhaps that has something to do with people’s different experiences. Found an article… https://www.journaldemontreal.com/2017/12/13/un-nouveau-deneigeur-dans-larrondissement-du-sud-ouest

    • Ian 13:05 on 2020-09-01 Permalink

      That’s a good point, I know our snow removal company last year was different from the year before – and the guys last year were MUCH better.

  • Kate 15:13 on 2020-08-31 Permalink | Reply  

    The mayor’s going to create a committee to study contentious memorials. Basically, I doubt there’s a statue or plaque in town that nobody has a beef with.

    • Jebediah Pallindrome 15:26 on 2020-08-31 Permalink

      Robbie Burns
      Brother Andre
      Polytechnique memorial
      Wilfrid Laurier
      Mihai Eminescu
      John Young
      Georges-Etienne Cartier
      Emilie Gamelin
      Simon Bolivar
      Salvador Allende
      Irish cholera victims commemorative stone

      I haven’t hearch much argument re these but maybe I is wrong

    • Kate 16:51 on 2020-08-31 Permalink

      I knew nothing about Mihai Eminescu nor do I know where his memorial is. But Wikipedia has this to say: Due to his conservative nationalistic views, Eminescu was easily adopted as an icon by the Romanian right. […] It has also been revealed that Eminescu demanded strong anti-Jewish legislation on the German model, saying, among other things, that “the Jew does not deserve any rights anywhere in Europe because he is not working.”

    • MarcG 16:52 on 2020-08-31 Permalink

      Norman Bethune?

    • John B 16:56 on 2020-08-31 Permalink

      Look up Bethune in China.

    • Kate 17:04 on 2020-08-31 Permalink

      And those Irish cholera victims! I’ve heard they made a real mess in those fever sheds.

    • Jebediah Pallindrome 17:18 on 2020-08-31 Permalink

      @Kate – I saw Romanian poet and thought, ‘this should be fine’

      Ruh roh!

      Also yeah good addition @MarcG – I had forgotten Bethune.

      Remarkably, no one seems to ever make a big stink about John Cabot but I don’t think he did much more than sail here.

    • Ian 17:29 on 2020-08-31 Permalink

      Raoul Wallenberg

    • Kate 18:25 on 2020-08-31 Permalink

      John B, that statue of Bethune was donated by the Chinese government. What unpopular thing is Bethune supposed to have done?

    • John B 19:10 on 2020-08-31 Permalink

      It doesn’t look like he was super bad, but he did join up with the Communist Party of China and work as a doctor, I think for the Mao’s army, (my quick Googling is unclear if he was actually in the employ of Mao’s army). He does appear to have been a communist who spent a night chatting it up with Mao in a cave. If we’re looking for blemish-free heroes someone who shared Mao’s beliefs and helped bring him to power would not be appropriate.

      Not that he didn’t do amazing things in his life. He’s just not 100% perfect, (as most people are not).

      I read somewhere recently that Chinese people actually come to Canada to see the Bethune sights. He’s pretty well-known in China, probably more than in Canada.

    • Chris 19:40 on 2020-08-31 Permalink

      And don’t forget “Mahatma” Gandhi, I believe there’s a bust of him in the eponymous park. His was a racist and slept naked with young girls.

    • Michael Black 20:41 on 2020-08-31 Permalink

      Have you even read a biography of Gandhi-ji?

      Forty years ago biographies noted his eccentricities. He didn’t have sex with those young women (who were legal age, merely considerably younger than him), and since you seem to imply it, he wasn’t a minister or monk, just religious in his own way.

      His “racism” was passing. Besides, it is dwarfed by the racism of the greater society, the one that he had to campaign against.

      Once India tossed off its chains, other countries looked to Gandhi for inspirstion, if not his nonviolence. That includes the ANC before they went to violence.

      And here’s the fine print. The US pacifists sitting out WWII in prison looked to Gandhi, and that included Jim Peck, George Houser, Bayard Rustin, and James Farmer. Not only did some of them campaign to desegregate the prison dining halls, but after the war they put Gandhi’s work into practice. In work against war, but also against segregation.

      Bayard Rustin went to India in 1948 to learn from Gandhi, except he got there too late, Gandhi had been assassinated.

      They organized and paricipated in the Journey of Reconciliation in 1947 and the original Freedom Ride in 1961.

      They connected Gandhi to the civil rights movement, though I read recently that another big name had actually spent time with Gandhi.

      People tearing down statues react to little factoids and then make their decision. Since all of this happened, he can’t be the evil that you believe enough that you think his statues should come down.

      You should be way more concerned that we have parks named after MLK, Nelson Mandela and Gandhi in the same neighborhood. Presumably because “those people” living there would be most concerned with their lives. But they should be spread out, and in more “valuable” places. It’s no different from putting a Black Lives Matter banner away from downtown. These things matter to all of us.

    • Chris 22:07 on 2020-08-31 Permalink

      Michael, you have read too much into my two little sentences. My own personal view is that celebrating/remembering people who made major contributions should not be predicated on those people being perfect, because no one is. Gandhi and Macdonald were not perfect, but they made major and important contributions. We should celebrate their achievements while also remembering their failings.

      Just as some have a hate-on for Macdonald, some have a hate-on for Gandhi. This summer his statues have been vandalized in London, Washington, Amsterdam, etc. His statues have been torn down in Ghana and elsewhere. Spend a little time googling “gandhi statue”.

      Do you really think Gandhi sleeping with 18 year olds decades younger than him would survive today with #MeToo? With the power imbalance between them? Was it real consent? And his “passing” racism? He was a 20th century man, some would say he should have known better than 19th century Macdonald. For many, he just wasn’t perfect enough, and therefore must be cancelled.

    • Douglas 22:58 on 2020-08-31 Permalink

      Ghandi said “black people are troublesome, very dirty and live like animals”.

      So Ghandi was a racist. Why are we allowing racists to have statues placed and worshipped? We should take those statues of racists down and turn and plowshare it.

      Or are we okay with racists because they did something we like and approve of?

      Those youths with pseudo educations need to actually pick up books and read, instead of existing in their bubbles and thinking themselves woke and smart.

    • Ian 08:14 on 2020-09-01 Permalink

      Michael Black, for all that Western thinkers took as inspiration from Gandhi, he is also largely responsible for the insane violence that took place during partition of 1947. Perhaps you have not heard of the Death Trains. My wife’s grandfather was there, as part of the international peacekeeping force, made effectively powerless they watched as up to 2 million people died in the violence surrounding partition. To a not insignificant extent the philosophy behind partition is what led to the current state of extreme Hindu Nationalism.

      As far as Norman Bethune is concerned, while Mao is certainly a problematic character, Bethune was a selfless & highly principled person who first served in the Spanish Civil War and then later in China during the Manchurian War with Japan. His contributions to surgery and field medicine go well beyond the two years he spent in China, but regardless, he is considered a hero of the Chinese people, not some mere Maoist functionary as John B implies.

    • Ephraim 08:42 on 2020-09-01 Permalink

      @Ian – I’m sure there are plenty of people upset that Wallenberg saved Jews. Even he isn’t free of someone hating him.

    • Meezly 09:37 on 2020-09-01 Permalink

      “Gandhi and Macdonald were not perfect, but they made major and important contributions. We should celebrate their achievements while also remembering their failings.”

      Of course no leader is 100% perfect. They were a product of their times and may have had political beliefs that are now wrong. Uh huh fine. I just kind of draw the line at leaders who, y’know, had some genocidal leanings. I would think that is enough to question their major contributions. Esp. when those contributions were made to benefit only specific groups of people at the expense of many people’s lives.

    • JaneyB 12:10 on 2020-09-01 Permalink

      Maybe we should stick to public art (eg: no notables). Sometimes people hate it but that’s about it.

    • Ian 21:04 on 2020-09-01 Permalink

      Honestly, monuments are some of the most boring public art we can have – that’s why when there are sculptures to commemorate anything we almost never have statues anymore. Maybe this is a quaint artifact of the past that we should just let go of when it becomes cringy.
      For those who cry “HISTORY”, we have a Nelson’s column in Montreal but I am certain that very, very few people know who Lord Nelson was let alone why there is a column let alone why in fact he is important to the history of Montreal. At least some generic art sculpture would be prettier and more visually interesting.

    • Kate 23:06 on 2020-09-01 Permalink

      There are nice carvings of ships around the base of our Nelson’s column, and I like the fact that Montreal’s is older than London’s, although not as old as Glasgow’s. Wikipedia also informs me our Nelson’s Column is the oldest monument in the city and oldest war monument in Canada.

      This Le Devoir article (which I link in an item above) mentions how in 1963 the FLQ blew up Wolfe’s column on the Plains of Abraham and a statue of Queen Victoria in Quebec City similar to ours in Victoria Square, but they never got around to blowing up our Nelson’s Column like the Irish did with the one in Dublin.

  • Kate 09:38 on 2020-08-31 Permalink | Reply  

    The city site has a piece on the Lebanese who came here in the 1970s and established businesses that are now part of the landscape, like Marché Adonis, although a footnote mentions that the Syrian community was already here doing business at the turn of the last century.

    • Ian 17:31 on 2020-08-31 Permalink

      I wonder if that’s why the few “Lebanese” restaurants in Toronto are mostly owned and run by Syrians.

    • Kate 18:27 on 2020-08-31 Permalink

      Well, there were definitely Syrians in Canada quite a long time ago. Do you remember the little Syrian food store next to the Monument National? Went away when the block was torn down, but it had been there for decades. I’ve also seen a photo of a store on St-Hubert in the 1940s called Ayoub’s, offering “spécialités orientaux” back when Oriental meant the eastern end of the Mediterranean, not the Far East.

    • Ian 08:16 on 2020-09-01 Permalink

      Orientalism in art generally means a romantic version of the Ottoman empire, too. “Tales from a Thousand and One Nights/ Ingres paintings of concubines” kind of thing.

    • JaneyB 12:16 on 2020-09-01 Permalink

      Speaking of food and Syrians…a very excellent cookbook by a Syrian-Canadian whose family was farming in Saskatchewan during the Depression: https://www.amazon.ca/FfromThe-Lands-Olives-Habeeb-Salloum/dp/156656414X
      Apparently, they were not the only ones either!

  • Kate 09:32 on 2020-08-31 Permalink | Reply  

    Mayor Plante said last week she didn’t want to use force to break up the tent city, but Monday’s news is that police could be sent in anyway.

  • Kate 09:06 on 2020-08-31 Permalink | Reply  

    Le Devoir springs off the demolition of the Rapido building earlier this summer for a discussion of façadism around town. Some good photos of examples of this questionable architectural practice.

    • CE 10:13 on 2020-08-31 Permalink

      I’m surprised that buildings in that style were still being built into the 1940s. I thought that the mansard roofs and all the ornamentation had died out by then.

    • JoeNotCharles 10:41 on 2020-08-31 Permalink

      Of those images:

      #2 looks ridiculous, being able to see right through it

      #5 is borderline. You can’t really tell from the angle in the photograph how obvious it is that this is just a facade, but I know from seeing it in person that it’s clearly just a shell. It’s not as bad looking as #2 though, so I’m divided on whether it’s stupid or interesting in this case.

      #1 I like, because it’s a freestanding structure it feels like a solid building that’s there for architectural interest, not just a facade. I wouldn’t want this to become a huge trend though – once or twice it’s interesting (especially if they keep a different part of the church in each instance) but if every project has a bit of church sticking out it will stop being original.

      #4 I wouldn’t even call facade-ism – these buildings are still in use. Great use of the existing style IMHO. (Not a big fan of the blocky look of the new condo behind it but keeping the older houses mitigates that a bit.)

      #2 and #6 – Can’t really tell since they’re still under construction but it looks like the facades are going to be integrated into the new buildings like in #4, not slapped on like #2 and #5, so looks fine to me.

    • DeWolf 11:09 on 2020-08-31 Permalink

      CE, I’m thinking there’s something wonky with the rôle foncier’s entry on that building. I have come across other buildings that are clearly quite old but have strangely recent construction dates listed in the rôle.

    • DeWolf 11:12 on 2020-08-31 Permalink

      I’ve always thought the most egregious examples of façadism were the old façades glued to the St-Antoine side of the Palais des Congrès.

    • Kate 11:45 on 2020-08-31 Permalink

      JoeNotCharles, they did something similar to #2 in my neighbourhood. Like École Baril, École Saint-Gérard had to be razed to the ground after decades of neglect, so they put up a brand new building and preserved a stone arch from the original façade in the same way, separated from the building, more like a piece of sculpture than an architectural element.

    • CE 12:45 on 2020-08-31 Permalink

      @DeWolf, I used to think the same thing until they put up that building on St-Laurent between Café Cléopâtre and the Monument National.

    • DeWolf 13:34 on 2020-08-31 Permalink

      I know those are controversial but at least an attempt was made to recontextualize them, rather than pretending they’re still the same old buildings that existed before.

  • Kate 09:01 on 2020-08-31 Permalink | Reply  

    Police broke up what’s described here as a large rulebreaking party in Hochelaga-Maisonneuve on Sunday evening.

  • Kate 08:33 on 2020-08-31 Permalink | Reply  

    The École supérieure de ballet du Québec has its eye on Saint-Denis church, on Laurier near the metro, a plan in which church activities would continue in the basement while a lot of money is spent fixing up and enlarging the church for dance classes and practice space.

    I suppose we have to do something with these church buildings, and people might as well practise their fouettés as anything.

    • walkerp 08:46 on 2020-08-31 Permalink

      Very bizarre article. It’s all about the ballet school having this big plan but not a single word from the Fabrique of the church itself. And what about the existing tenants in the presbytere. Odd way to write an article.

    • MistaP 09:05 on 2020-08-31 Permalink

      They should wait a little bit.
      Cirque du Soleil’s HQ should soon be available.

    • Kate 18:29 on 2020-08-31 Permalink

      MistaP, this city will always need a clown school.

    • Ian 08:27 on 2020-09-01 Permalink

      École Nationale de cirque exists independent of Cirque du Soleil, no worries there. Cirque was a very bug employer but there are many other small troupes even just in Montreal.

      Breathe a sigh of relief, there is no danger of a clown shortage in Montreal.

  • Kate 08:27 on 2020-08-31 Permalink | Reply  

    I had no idea anyone was thinking of putting Robert Poëti up to run for mayor until I saw this Radio-Canada piece about how he’s saying he’d rather not.

  • Kate 20:24 on 2020-08-30 Permalink | Reply  

    The fallen statue of Sir John A. Macdonald was hauled away by a city truck Sunday morning. No decision has been made yet what to do with it, although there has been a wave of reactions.

    I’d say beat it into plowshares, but we don’t need plowshares any more.

    That Radio-Canada piece includes a discussion with an historian, who says “vandalizing a statue becomes part of its history. It’s also the history of a society in evolution.”

    CBC also spoke to an Indigenous education professor in P.E.I. about the toppling. She makes a good point that nobody got hurt in the gesture, among other things.

    • walkerp 08:46 on 2020-08-31 Permalink

      Good one on the plowshares! 🙂

    • Ephraim 09:14 on 2020-08-31 Permalink

      I’m sure that it would look good in the foyer of a museum, along with a plaque explaining his negative and positive attributes, for future generations to see, learn and judge.

    • Uatu 10:39 on 2020-08-31 Permalink

      Moment factory should install some holographic projector to display some 3d image of a statue. Maybe a clown….

    • Ian 17:32 on 2020-08-31 Permalink

      Melt it down for summer of covid souvenir medallions.

  • Kate 20:19 on 2020-08-30 Permalink | Reply  

    A convoy of Black drivers drove from Montreal to François Legault’s riding office in L’Assomption on Sunday to protest racial profiling and arbitrary stops by police.

  • Kate 16:22 on 2020-08-30 Permalink | Reply  

    The city is ending its parking sticker grace period, so you need to get a new one if you use them.

    • Ian 17:33 on 2020-08-31 Permalink

      Thanks for the reminder! I forgot mine sitting on my desk and had a moment of panic before I found it under a pile of books.

  • Kate 10:32 on 2020-08-30 Permalink | Reply  

    I was looking up something else in the blog archives, and was reminded that, not so long ago, people were worried about the REM construction in the Mount Royal tunnel and how it would make it difficult for suburbanites to commute to their downtown offices. Not so much any more.

    I’m seeing articles both about how influenza could be naturally spiked by the distancing measures imposed for the pandemic, but also how a bad flu season could overwhelm hospitals if it coincided with a second wave of Covid. I prefer to be optimistic, and hope in future people will be saying “Do you remember colds and flu, and how they just stopped after 2020?”

    Also, on thinking about it: haven’t had any religious proselytizers at the door either. Also a plus.

    Although… thinking again… I’ve recently had several of those recorded scare phone calls claiming to be from the federal government. I think the scammers are going to ramp those up as CERB ends and people get nervous about their right to financial aid.

    • mare 11:39 on 2020-08-30 Permalink

      Guess who’s going to pay for the contractually guaranteed 15% Return-On-Investment the REM has to make? I wouldn’t be surprised the contract also has a guaranteed start date, wether the REM is running or not, to prevent delays by unknowns like construction problems, permits and legal challenges. You could say a pandemic is and “act of god” and is excluded, but since the contracts are secret we will never know. My prediction is that new transport tax is going to be straight into the coffers of CDPQ-Infra.

    • Spi 13:24 on 2020-08-30 Permalink

      @mare that’s completely false and you’re spreading misinformation, there is no contractually guaranteed ROI of any sort attached to the REM project. If there is I’d love to see some source documents. What there is a concrete framework as to how any (if there is a profit) ROI will be split up amongst the parties involved the first tranche (I believe 9%) goes entirely to CDPQI, I’m a bit fuzzy on the details for the tranches above the first one, the second tranche it is split between CDPQI, Qc and Fed government (in a 50/25/25 share I believe, potentially up to 15% which may be the source of this figure) and the third tranche (Excess of 15%) would be split 50/50 between Qc and Fed.

      The closest thing that resembles a guaranteed ROI in place is the fee that the ARTM will be paying la caisse per passenger-km.

    • mare 00:01 on 2020-08-31 Permalink

      @spi My percentages are probably off, it’s been a while. But taking the first 9% of the profits and getting 70 cents per passenger kilometre (current cost is 30 cents for the Deux-Montagne line) sounds to me like a guaranteed ROI. And I’m very curious (and sceptical) if the losses will be carried by CDPQI, or just transferred to the Quebec Government e.g. the tax payers.

      This project just stinks on so many levels that I’m sure there will be surprises along the way. But maybe I’m wrong, time will tell.

      Regular commenter Anton Dubrau wrote a lot about it over the years, if people want to refresh their memory.


    • ant6n 04:49 on 2020-08-31 Permalink

      Not a guaranteed ROI, but in practice there will be a very high ROI, based on the high fees the REM will get per passenger-km (more than double of the old, inefficiently operated commuter rail line), plus the various extra income like development taxes etc. The tranches relate to the distribution of profits of the REM: the governments and the CDPQ both “paid” about half for the project and thus get a 50.5% vs 49.5% split on ownership (although that is already a lie, because the government shovelled all sorts of money and assets towards the project without getting equity in return – like the deux-montagnes line, at a fraction of its value). At the same time most of the profits go to the Caisse, because suppossedly they`re taking on more “risk” somehow. Anyway, the whole scheme, is about funneling infrastructure and public transit spending towards the Caisse. We´ll get a suburban-centric mini-metro in return, which isn´t terrible, but the system could`ve been designed to serve many more people, and it is very expensive in the long run.

      Whatever happened to the story about the airport REM station, didn’t the airport say they couldn’t afford it anymore or something?

    • Kate 08:55 on 2020-08-31 Permalink

      ant6n, in June the airport was begging for a handout to build the spur.

    • Uatu 10:34 on 2020-08-31 Permalink

      The non compete clause to cross the Champlain bridge means there’s a guaranteed ROI. Everyone using south shore transit will be funneled to the train station so the new fare increase is effectively a tax/toll for South Shore residents anyways

    • ant6n 17:10 on 2020-08-31 Permalink

      As an aside, it seems they used to say they’ll begin operating the South Shore branch in 2020. Now their website says “a representative segment will be implemented on the South Shore in late 2020.” I wonder what this means: will they only have for example some sort of a shuttle going back and forth between two South Shore stations, and only on Sunday afternoons? It’s a funny wording that sounds like they want to manage expectations, while still formally opening the line in 2020, for _some_ sort of operation.

  • Kate 09:35 on 2020-08-30 Permalink | Reply  

    A Quebecor columnist complains about service in English in a store in NDG. But she says it’s evidence that Montreal is a bilingual city, which is not the problem. Do I even believe her anecdote? A major grocery store chain hiring someone who can’t speak French to do a public-facing job – is that even likely? In NDG, you will need English, but even the most fractious anglo has to admit that anyone anywhere in Montreal whose job involves interacting with the public should be able to respond in French.

    • DeWolf 10:45 on 2020-08-30 Permalink

      I’m surprised that would happen at an IGA, but this kind of thing does happen. I was in the Uniburger at St-Denis/Ontario last winter (not exactly the most anglo neighbourhood!) and the clerk simply did not speak French. Several other customers came in after me and he served them in English without so much as a “bonjour.” Most of them were young and switched to English without a second thought, but an older couple seemed a bit miffed and insisted on speaking French.

      I don’t want to seem sympathetic to the recrudescent bout of anglophobia that has been in the media lately, but since moving back two years ago, I have to admit I’ve been surprised at how much more English the city seems. The other day I walked past some temporary STM bus stop signs on Bernard and one of them was simply written “NO PARKING.” And that was a sign from the STM of all organizations.

    • Myles 14:32 on 2020-08-30 Permalink

      That’s surprising to me, but I guess I’m insulated from it, living near Parc Laurier where France French seems more common than English.

    • Hamza khan 15:58 on 2020-08-30 Permalink

      I wish she had been more specific because the only IGA near NDG is in CSL , where I could imagine someone Anglo could end up in this kind of job

    • Joey 16:43 on 2020-08-30 Permalink

      @Hamza I think there’s a new IGA on CSL road near Clanranald. Where Amazona used to be.

    • Kevin 19:06 on 2020-08-30 Permalink

      That’s a column? Yeesh.

      Is it possible that Mme. Latraverse was speaking inaudibly through her mask?

    • Hamza 22:33 on 2020-08-30 Permalink

      In either case, if you’re located on the north side of CSL boulevard, you’re in CSL (or hampstead if you’re east enough)

    • DeWolf 11:20 on 2020-08-31 Permalink

      Not quite, Hamza. CSL starts 1.5km east of the new IGA. Monkland is only a block away from it. It’s definitely the most francophone part of NDG.

    • PatrickC 13:23 on 2020-08-31 Permalink

      I wonder what Mme. Latraverse thinks about that Verdun campaign to put some ” *luv* dans ton panier”?

  • Kate 09:09 on 2020-08-30 Permalink | Reply  

    Masson Street is launching a second wave of crowdfunding, following the success of the first one. I haven’t heard of other SDCs doing this, but it seems to be working for Masson Street.

    • JohnV 09:55 on 2020-08-30 Permalink

      La Promenade Wellington here in Verdun did essentially the same in May : http://www.promenadewellington.com/fr/quartier/du-luv-dans-ton-panier/

    • DavidH 14:49 on 2020-08-30 Permalink

      Plaza St-Hubert had one this summer as well.

    • Kate 16:21 on 2020-08-30 Permalink

      These are nice to hear about. I don’t live close enough to any of the dense shopping streets to have such a useful offer nearby.

      Update: Spoke too soon. Jarry’s SDC is also making a similar offer!

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