Legault immigrants French

Legault: Which federal party will help Quebec refuse immigrants who don’t speak French?

The Premier is tired of Ottawa imposing family reunification on the province.

In a press conference this morning, Quebec Premier François Legault presented his “shopping list” for the federal party leaders currently hoping to form the next government in Ottawa. After speaking about health transfers, Legault focused on the issue of immigration and the way that is endangers the status of the French language. He noted that while 57% of immigrants to Quebec are “economic immigrants” (educated, skilled labour who already speak or will learn French) and 17% are refugees (which Quebec will accept out of compassion), the other 24% fall under the category of “family reunification,” over which the federal government has complete control. His request of the party leaders is to commit to give Quebec control of the latter category of immigrants so that the province can choose who to accept based on their ability to speak French.

“It’s important to protect French, and that Quebec has more control over the selection of immigration. It’s the key for the future of our nation — it’s an issue of survival.”

—François Legault

Legault stated that as the only leader of a majority-francophone nation in North America, his #1 job is to protect the French language. He said that multiculturalism is not the priority here, given that Quebec is “a francophone island in a sea of anglophones.”

Legault also asked Quebec voters to consider, when casting a ballot in the Sept. 20 election, the fact that two of the federal parties (the Liberals and NDP) are far more “centralist,” while the others (the Bloc and Conservatives) would be more willing to transfer additional control to the province.

When asked about Legault’s immigration request at a press conference this afternoon, Conservative leader Erin O’Toole said that if his party formed the next government, he would give the province control over family reunification, as per the Conservative platform’s “contract with the Québécois.”

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