Updates from June, 2023 Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • Kate 14:08 on 2023-06-21 Permalink | Reply  

    SPVM chief Fady Dagher says he can’t recruit enough new cops and that, considering retirements and resignations, he’s only getting 10 new people a year. But he says the recent boost in salaries might help.

    The city plans a second forum on armed violence this fall. It’s also considering the creation of a non‑crime‑related emergency line for mental health crises and the like.

    • Ephraim 15:06 on 2023-06-21 Permalink

      I wish someone would sit down with him and explain that it’s not the salary… it’s the force itself.

      They aren’t respected. And they won’t be as long as the brotherhood has it’s way. Citizens want to feel that the police are under the same rules that we are. You cannot put a homeless man in the back of the vehicle and dump him (officers Pierre-Luc Furlotte and Patrick Guay) and you can’t stop a man for driving while black. How many police were involved in a black man dancing next to his car? 6! And another was given a $149 ticket for singing C&C Factory in his car. How do they want us to respect them? And when they are caught, management not only doesn’t do anything, but they aren’t held accountable either. To this day, I still so many questions, like how they could leave their assigned district, who signed the duty sheet? Who signed on the car mileage, gas bill? Why was the car not flagged by GPS? Why was management not aware that these two weren’t where they were supposed to be for HOURS… all questions that should have been asked by a Civilian oversight committee. But we don’t have a proper Civilian oversight committee.

      They want overtime pay for directing traffic. But by doing so, they are showing us that they aren’t there to police, but rather to replace a traffic light that isn’t fully automated.

      And of course, who, as a PoC or immigrant wants to go into a force that is so damn discriminatory?

      Also, are we going to be the last police force on earth to add the ability to SMS/MMS to the police? You see a crime and you can’t even send them a photo of the licence plate or send them a google map with the location.

    • Dominic 15:24 on 2023-06-21 Permalink

      Maybe we could get some bodycams too for Ephraim’s wishlist. The only major North American city without them. Absurd!

    • JaneyB 15:35 on 2023-06-21 Permalink

      @Ephraim – Send Dagher your list. He seems genuine even if other elements of the force are opportunistic/careless/racist. I’m sure many cops are mostly decent and fairly committed. Clearly the institutional aspects though need a big revamp.

    • Chris 11:36 on 2023-06-22 Permalink

      >They aren’t respected.

      Maybe not in your bubble. But actual polling disagrees: “three-quarters view the police in their community favourably, despite concerns about how officers may treat some demographics. For a similar number, 72 per cent, local police are a source of pride. This includes two-thirds of Indigenous and visible minority respondents.”

    • Ian 11:58 on 2023-06-22 Permalink

      2 can play the polls game.

      “More than 80% of Montrealers think an independent inquiry is the only way to shed light on allegations of police corruption, a poll suggests.”


      “Fewer than half of Canadians feel safer when they see a police officer, poll finds
      Considering the primary purpose of policing, it reveals a disconnect for Canada’s police agencies and highlights fractures in relations within their local communities”


    • Ian 14:45 on 2023-06-22 Permalink

    • Joey 17:08 on 2023-06-22 Permalink

      Ted Rutland is right on… The Fady Dagher era – meet the new boss, same as the old boss: https://www.lapresse.ca/actualites/grand-montreal/2023-06-22/spvm/les-policiers-pourront-encore-interpeller-sans-motif.php

      “Le SPVM ne mettra pas fin aux interpellations sans motif comme suggère le rapport qu’il a commandé. Fady Dagher ne veut pas annoncer une « mesure symbolique » pour lutter contre le profilage racial, a-t-il déclaré en conférence de presse mercredi.”

      It’s not so symbolic when you’re the one being stopped/harassed by the police for no legitimate reason. But at least Chief Dagher will get rid of the swimming exam for recruits…

  • Kate 13:55 on 2023-06-21 Permalink | Reply  

    CBC notes some new bronze sculptures on Peel Street which we’re supposed to be able to sit on. I haven’t yet seen them in person and am hoping the photos don’t do them justice, because they made me think of nothing so much as Denis Coderre’s granite stumps.

    • carswell 14:20 on 2023-06-21 Permalink

      There are several Coderre stumps in Tiohtià:ke Otsira’kéhne Park (on the Outremont summit of Mount Royal) that I hike by regularly. I’ve never once seen anyone sitting on them or, other than me, even looking at them (they’re “split” by a metal band with inscriptions, usually a line from a poem). They don’t even seem to hold much interest for dogs as pissoirs, unlike the hunk of granite topped with a bronze relief map of the mountain at the east entrance, not technically part of Tiohtià:ke Otsira’kéhne Park).

      Mini-rant: I’m not at all opposed to seeing First Nations’ names used for city streets and parks but shouldn’t they at least be spellable and pronounceable by the majority of citizens? And look, the city’s website doesn’t help with pronunciation, doesn’t tell you the language involved, doesn’t say who or what the park is named after. More often than not, the VdeM website is confusing, unhelpful or useless and yet they want it to be a major channel for interacting with the city government: a functionary’s wetdream.

    • shawn 14:43 on 2023-06-21 Permalink

      These do seem more functional than the Coderre stumps, which isn’t hard to beat. And of course more artful as well.

      And yes I would love to see a phonetic pronunciation in smaller type on signage. I think it would advance the cause of getting more of us to be able to do justice to these new (old) names…

    • carswell 14:48 on 2023-06-21 Permalink

      Neglected to include the link to the VdeM page for the park: https://montreal.ca/lieux/parc-tiohtiake-otsirakehne

    • Kate 15:49 on 2023-06-21 Permalink

      This Gazette piece from June 2017 says the name is pronounced djodjâgué otchira’guéné. It has also made me wonder why the spelling of Indigenous names doesn’t relate well to their pronunciation whether in French or English.

      The Gazette piece says Tiohtià:ke Otsira’kéhne means “the place of the big fire” – Tiohtià:ke being the Mohawk name for Montreal.

    • shawn 17:16 on 2023-06-21 Permalink

      Right, that’s the little that I remember: when you see Ti it’s actually pronounced more like a guttural Dj, for one thing.

      It makes learning and pronouncing French look like a piece of cake.

    • walkerp 17:30 on 2023-06-21 Permalink

      I don’t know if they were done under Coderre but the “stumps” with the relief maps are excellent.

    • shawn 17:42 on 2023-06-21 Permalink

      Right, the bronze relief maps are the only useful part of it. I only know of one, at the trail entrance on Mount Royal Blvd in Upper Outremont, but perhaps there’s one at the other end?

    • EmilyG 18:22 on 2023-06-21 Permalink

      The reason that the spelling of Indigenous names doesn’t seem to relate to their pronunciation in French or English is that Indigenous languages are not French or English. As with other languages that are very different from French and English, they can contain sounds that won’t have exact equivalents in other languages, so the French/English spellings are a bit of a compromise. And Indigenous languages didn’t evolve to fit a French/English writing system.

    • carswell 18:31 on 2023-06-21 Permalink

      @Kate Thanks for the info. However well intended, it’s still a ridiculous name that next to no one will remember how to spell or say or will understand if heard. Not sure I understand why Mohawk orthography should reflect French or English pronunciation. The letters were probably chosen because people were familiar with them and they didn’t require special typefaces. Other Amerindian languages, Cherokee for example, use Latin and non-Latin characters but, again, the characters derived from other languages don’t always keep their original sounds. “Cherokee is written in an 85-character syllabary invented by Sequoyah (also known as Guest or George Gist). Many of the letters resemble the Latin letters they derive from, but have completely unrelated sound values; Sequoyah had seen English, Hebrew, and Greek writing but did not know how to read them.” -Wikipedia. The Wikipedia article on the Mohawk language is interesting; apparently colons are placed after vowels to indicate the vowel is long. Interestingly, the orthography wasn’t standardized until 1993.

      @walkerp Don’t know when the relief maps were installed but it may well have been during the Coderre administration. If memory serves, an inscription on or sign near them implies they’re connected to something larger than the city — maybe the mountain’s designation as a heritage site in 2005? My Web searches aren’t turning up any information; the installations aren’t even shown on official city maps of the mountain. Will check next time I pass by.

      @shawn There’s another relief map at the entrance to the often overlooked section of the park between Camillien Houde and Mont Royal Ave. just east of the Jewish cemetery and I believe there’s at least one or two more elsewhere. They are beautiful and useful. Too bad they often reek of dog urine.

    • shawn 19:31 on 2023-06-21 Permalink

      Thanks carswell the one east of the Jewish cemeteries is the one I know.

    • carswell 20:10 on 2023-06-21 Permalink

      The other nearby one is at the east entrance to the Outremont summit, where Mont-Royal Ave. takes a 90-degree turn (north if you’re heading west). There are two pillars on either side of the path, the former route of Mont-Royal, which went up over the summit and down behind the UdeM tower before joining Queen-Mary. The relief map is about 100 m in.

    • Kate 20:17 on 2023-06-21 Permalink

      The letters were probably chosen because people were familiar with them and they didn’t require special typefaces.

      Usually you’ll find that these thngs came about because someone was doing a translation of the Bible. It’s even possible the pronunciation of Mohawk has changed since those equivalents were set down. But it does mean that for anyone who does not know the language (and that would probably include a lot of Indigenous people as well as the rest of us), working out how to say any of the written words we see is tricky verging on impossible.

    • jeather 20:28 on 2023-06-21 Permalink

      The spellng of the Mohawk language was standardized 25 years ago, it’s certainly much more regular than English is (it uses the more standard vowel sounds that other European languages do as well, though of course it isn’t like that is more or less regular, just a historical quirk from English). It is true that, as with any other language, if you don’t know how to read it, you don’t know how to pronounce it.

    • shawn 20:32 on 2023-06-21 Permalink

      carswell yes I remember now. In fact, those two pillars have the logo for the Catholic cemetery oddly enough. It’s a reminder that they actually control or ceded that land. I’m pretty sure that has been discussed here before.

    • Kate 22:33 on 2023-06-21 Permalink

      Evidently I am wrong about written Mohawk. Thanks all.

    • Nicholas 00:29 on 2023-06-22 Permalink

      jeather, it’s not the case the if you don’t know how to read a language, you necessarily don’t know how to pronounce it. Obviously for most of human history most people didn’t know how to read but did know how to pronounce. But even today, there are many phonetic (technically, phonemic) languages, such that so long as you learn how to pronounce the letters you can pronounce nearly all words without having any idea what you’re saying (reading). No language is perfectly phonemic, but I can pronounce two languages that I can’t read nor understand because I learned the alphabet and its fairly simple pronunciation. (Obviously I’m not great at it, I have an accent.) English is awful for this, but even with French, though difficult, if you learn all the rules (though not nearly as simple as other languages), you can pronounce nearly everything (though on hearing it you can’t write it down with certainty (like -el and -elle), so it’s one-way from text to sound, unlike the phonemic languages which can go both ways). I have no idea how phonemic Mohawk is, but if the French and English were helping with standardizing spelling, I don’t have much hope for it being so! 🙂

    • jeather 09:23 on 2023-06-22 Permalink

      Yes, if you are say an opera singer, learning how to pronounce German and Italian, eg, without being able to speak them is pretty important.

      Mohawk is very, very phonemic, because no one in the 90s is going to say “yes, let’s make a spelling system with lots of exceptions!” (I don’t remember all the details, but you can look them up — if you know the IPA plus you remember that they voice consonants before vowels [that’s why we pronounce Kahnawake with g sounds and not k], you’ve pretty much got it.)

      I guess the distinction or lack thereof between “I can sound this language out” and “I can read this language” re the necessity of understanding what you are pronouncing isn’t really clear. I think I’d still say I can read Hebrew (aka I don’t need a transliteration) even though I don’t have the vocabulary anymore.

      The point is that we could absolutely figure out how to pronounce Mohawk from written, if we wanted to, because if you can pronounce any European language which uses the Latin alphabet that isn’t English, you know the vowels, and the consonants are the same as in English and the other European language.

    • Orr 19:04 on 2023-06-24 Permalink

      There is a relief map of parc lafontaine where rue Roy meets the park and there is a small belevedere there.

  • Kate 09:55 on 2023-06-21 Permalink | Reply  

    The Congrégation de Notre-Dame is selling its land, the domaine Villa‑Maria, which includes both the school of the same name and the private CEGEP Marianopolis, as well as buildings housing a lot of elderly nuns – average age 86 – who have to be looked after. The sale is not meant to take effect for seven years.

    It will change the face of that part of the city, bridging Westmount and NDG, when a developer buys it to construct condos. Condos on the Montreal side, at least; Westmount will have something to say about its own side of the land.

    • Kate 09:50 on 2023-06-21 Permalink | Reply  

      The extension of Cavendish Boulevard has been in and out of the news since I can remember. Now the suburbanites are mad that while Montreal accepted the Hippodrome land, it hasn’t kept up its part of the deal to start a BAPE study on the road extension.

      It’s been discussed here before on the blog.

    Compose new post
    Next post/Next comment
    Previous post/Previous comment
    Show/Hide comments
    Go to top
    Go to login
    Show/Hide help
    shift + esc