'Maple Spring' commission releases report
Report makes 21 recommendations concerning police tactics
The Quebec government has issued a report on the "Maple Spring" protests with 28 different recommendations, 21 of which concern police tactics during a series of nearly 700 protests that took place in 2012.
Deputy Premier and Minister of Public Safety, Lise Thériault, released the 450-page report Wednesday night.
In May 2013, the Parti Québécois government's public security minister, Stéphane Bergeron, set up a special committee chaired by former PQ minister Serge Ménard, to provide an overall picture of the events of spring 2012, as well as determine how demonstrations against tuition fee hikes escalated to such an extreme.
The report criticizes the Jean Charest Liberal government for not making more of an effort to mediate with student protesters.
A number of protesters were injured at one particularly violent demonstration in Victoriaville, Que. after clashing with police.
The commission said that the public security minister should restrain the police use of batons, pepper spray and stun grenades during protests.
The report also recommends police stop applying a section of the Highway Safety Code that allows them to make arrests for blocking traffic, saying the issue should first be debated in court.
It says policing student demonstrations during the Maple Spring cost Quebec nearly $26-million.