Jonathan Montpetit

Journalist

Jonathan Montpetit is a journalist with CBC Montreal. He covers politics and social affairs.

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To minorities worried about religious symbols law, Quebec premier says he 'could have gone further'

Quebec's religious symbols law has been denounced by minority groups that say it will institutionalize discrimination by limiting job opportunities for people who wear the hijab, turban or kippa. Premier François Legault's response? "To avoid extremism, you have to give a little to the majority."

A guide to Quebec's new immigration and religious symbols laws: How we got here and what's next

Quebec is a different place after the Coalition Avenir Québec government adopted two laws reshaping the province's immigration system and imposing new rules on people who wear religious symbols. Here's a guide to what happened, and what's next.

Court challenge, protest greet day one of Quebec's anti-religious symbols law

Quebec's new law on religious symbols has been on the books for less than 24 hours, but already opposition is being mounted on several fronts, including in the courts and on the streets.
Analysis

How can Quebec heal wounds caused by emotional debate over religious symbols?

Michel Jacques had his view of Muslims changed when he arranged a meeting with some in his small Quebec town. Some say these kinds of exchanges will save the province after the tensions raised by a controversial bill banning religious symbols for public employees, which passed Sunday night.

Jason Kenney bends truth on oil, equalization as he meets with Quebec counterpart

The Alberta premier repeated several misleading claims Wednesday about Quebec's oil consumption and the federal equalization payments program — none of which is likely to sit well with politicians in the province he is trying to court.

Montreal woman says STM bus driver didn't stop for her because of her niqab

A 23-year-old Montrealer says she discovered Islamophobic posts on an STM bus driver's Facebook profile after the woman did not pick her up at a stop. 
Analysis

Decision time for Quebec government as it tries to pass 2 nationalist bills by week's end

What is Premier François Legault willing to sacrifice to see his immigration and secularism reforms passed sooner rather than later?

Quebec Labour Ministry raids businesses allegedly linked to illegal network of temp workers

Eight different locations were served with search warrants, including a meat-processing factory south of Montreal.

Proposal to pipe fracked natural gas from Alberta to Saguenay, Que., under scrutiny

Opposition in Quebec is mounting to a $9-billion project supported by the premier and seen as a concession to Alberta, with scientists and government experts warning the project's proponents are vastly underestimating carbon dioxide emissions.

SNC-Lavalin to stand trial on corruption charges, Quebec judge rules

SNC-Lavalin spent months lobbying the federal government to avoid finding itself in this position. That ignited a major political scandal in Ottawa when the former attorney general, Jody Wilson-Raybould, accused the Prime Minister's Office of pressuring her to arrange a deal for the company.
Analysis

Why doesn't the Quebec government seem bothered by mounting tension over its religious symbols bill?

The Quebec government says there is “no tension and no division” over its bill. Mounting evidence of increased intolerance suggest otherwise.

UN human rights observers warn Quebec about secularism bill

High-ranking human rights monitors with the United Nations are concerned the Quebec government will violate fundamental freedoms if it moves ahead with legislation to limit where religious symbols can be worn.

Religious symbols ban pits Quebec feminists against each other

The legislative hearings, which wrapped Thursday, have highlighted stark differences among Quebec feminists — not just over what the bill means for women's rights, but what it means to be a feminist.
Analysis

As hearings end for Quebec's secularism bill, critics bemoan lack of data

Over the past two weeks, as lawmakers in Quebec City parsed over elements of the government’s secularism bill, one question kept coming up: What does the data say?

CAQ government ignoring Montreal's diversity with secularism bill, Plante tells lawmakers

The mayor of Quebec's biggest city accused the provincial government on Tuesday of rushing ahead with a controversial proposal to restrict religious symbols without considering the harm it will cause Montreal's diverse population.