Oui, ils se sont enfin rencontrés. #LePMsurTikTok #FYP #Quebec #TikTokQuebec #PolQc
The tattoo idea was first posted by artist Sébastien Fex as a challenge to his audience on Facebook. According to reports, Shawinigan native Billy Hamilton accepted Fex's challenge and got the tattoo on his upper arm.
The art is remarkable. Legault's smiling face is surrounded by the rainbow colours of the LEGO logo. Crossed underneath the premier are two syringes — a nod to the province's vaccine mandate.
Richelieu shop Atlas Tattoo posted a video of Hamilton getting the tattoo in April.
"It's incredible, you even put colour all around it," the premier exclaimed while admiring the tattoo.
"But I wonder, what's it going to look like in 10 years, 20 years?"
All Hamilton could do was laugh at the premier's extremely dad-like comment.
The government is getting a lot of heat for those Quebec anti-racism ads that circulated on television and social media.
First released on November 22, the ads aimed to challenge viewers' prejudice with depictions of a group of young Black friends sitting on a park bench, a man from South America going for a run in his neighbourhood, two medical professionals of Asian descent and an Arab family gathering for a meal in an apartment.
Initially, some viewers — including politicians like Liberal MNA Jennifer Maccarone — objected to the omission of the word "québécois" from character descriptions in the English versions of the ads. Critics claimed the omission isolated the anglophone community from the québécois identity. Quebec Minister for the Fight Against Racism Benoit Charette eventually agreed to change the English ads.
Now Khoa Lê, the director of the controversial ads, is shedding light on what happened behind the scenes.
In an interview with Radio-Canada's 24|60, Lê claimed the government made a change to his original videos in the final stages of the project, adding the word "québécois" to the French versions.
The director said the edit "derailed" the ads' anti-racist message and turned them into something more nationalistic. He took to Facebook to apologize for his role in the project and called on government leaders to do the same.
"I want to tell you that I tried," Lê wrote. "I’ve tried to be affirmative, sharp, vocal, eloquent and convincing to those with decision-making power. I did my best, but the best is not enough and all my good intentions can't excuse this advertisement."
Lê said he takes responsibility for his role in the creation of the ads.
"I take upon myself the mistake I made. I bow and apologize to those 'people of Arab origin gathered in their apartment,' 'those women of Asian origin in the hospital,' 'those Black youths gathered in the park' and 'those men from South America.'"
"To you, Benoit Charrette and François Legault, I ask you to withdraw this advertisement and to apologize."
The ads no longer appear on Premier Legault's YouTube page.
Montreal police say a 20-year-old man has died following reports of gunfire in the borough of Anjou. Officers found the man unconscious inside a vehicle after responding to a call at around 7:15 p.m. Thursday evening.
He was pronounced dead after emergency crews transported him to the hospital. The SPVM confirmed this was Montreal's 32nd homicide of 2021.
A second victim with what police described as minor injuries was found near the same vehicle. The victim, a 17-year-old male, was released from the hospital and spoke with investigators.
SPVM spokesperson Raphaël Bergeron said the 17-year-old is known to police.
Investigators are still analyzing the incident and as of 3:30 a.m., they had not determined a motive, Bergeron said.
The death of the 20-year-old man comes just over two weeks after the shooting death of 16-year-old Thomas Trudel in the Villeray–Saint-Michel–Parc-Extension borough, which marked Montreal's 31st homicide in 2021.
Trudel's death on November 14 led to widespread outcry from Montrealers and political leaders both local and provincial who called for an end to gun violence in the city.
Mayor Valérie Plante and Premier François Legault both visited the site of the 16-year-old's death. Many have criticized the unequal attention both leaders appear to have given the tragedy involving Trudel, who media reports have identified as white, compared to two minors of colour who have been killed in recent months, 16-year-old Jannai Dopwell-Bailey and 15-year-old Meriem Boundaoui.
Mayor Plante has repeatedly called for a nationwide handgun ban to combat violence in Montreal and elsewhere in Canada.
In January, the SPVM will host a forum with community stakeholders to refine its strategy in the fight against gun crime.
Coming to Quebecers live from a youth-filled vaccination clinic in Chaudière-Appalaches, Premier Legault reiterated that, as long as the COVID-19 situation allows for it, the government wants to loosen gathering rules so that 20 to 25 people are allowed in our homes for the holidays.
Le premier ministre r\u00e9pond aux questions des journalistes.\n \nSuivez notre m\u00eal\u00e9e de presse en direct https://twitter.com/i/broadcasts/1vAxRkjLWPzKl\u00a0\u2026
"We know that there are many families — when we look at the brothers, sisters, nephews, nieces — who exceed the 10 people. [...] So we hope to be able, for Christmas, for New Year's, to have families a little enlarged to 20, 25 people," he said. "Right now, it's going very well on the hospitalization side."
While Legault didn't set anything in stone, he did say the success of Quebec's youth vaccination campaign is increasing our chances to host more loved ones over the holidays. He noted that 240,000 young people aged 11 to 15 — 37% — have already booked an appointment or gotten a vaccine dose, which he called "a good start."
"By adding these 240,000 children who will be vaccinated, it will help to have coverage in our society. It will help us to give ourselves the chance that during the holiday season, we will be able to increase to 20, 25 the number of people in our homes," he said.
For now, Legault said the government and public health are "following the situation closely from day to day." He said Dr. Horacio Arruda, Quebec's director of public health, is set to make an official recommendation about holiday gatherings next week.
Legault added that there are no plans to add restrictions if there's a significant case increase. He said it's important to look at hospitalizations, which are currently "under control."
"I repeat to all Quebecers, be careful between now and Christmas so that we can give ourselves the maximum chance to have reasonably-sized parties during the holiday season," Legault said.
As part of Opération main-d'œuvre — the province's $3.9 billion investment plan to attract 170,000 workers in five years — the Government of Quebec announced that it will top-up employment assistance by $475 per week for folks that participate in full-time training or re-qualification in one of the targeted sectors.
These are the sectors you can choose from:
Health and Social Services (including mental health and youth protection)
Information technologies (IT)
"This will allow us to fill positions in 'essential' public services and strategic positions in the private sector," said Premier François Legault in a Facebook post.
"To do this, a new allocation will support the training and retraining of Quebecers who do not have a job. No one will be left behind. Quebecers who agree to take training in one of the targeted fields will be entitled to an allowance of $475 per week."
A government document outlining Opération main-d'œuvre explains that the temporary increase in income support will be in effect for three years for those entitled to it. It says the $475 per week allowance is meant to be equivalent to minimum wage.
According to a press release, this is one of 80 measures Quebec is implementing to address labour shortages.
The Opération main-d’œuvre website says the province's ongoing labour shortage "disrupts the delivery of some essential public services," "hinders growth and development in several strategic sectors of the Quebec economy," "compromises investments and slows down the realization of projects that are crucial to Quebec's prosperity" and more.
College students are eligible to receive $1,500 per full-time term to a maximum of $9,000. University students can get $2,500 per successful full-time term — a total of up to $15,000 for a three-year program or $20,000 for a four-year program.
This article’s cover image was used for illustrative purposes only.