Les Perreaux Profile picture
Winnipeg-born. Saskatchewan-raised. Globe and Mail reporter in Montreal. LPerreaux@globeandmail.com
13 May
I have in my hot little hands Bill 96,
An Act respecting French, the official and common language of Québec.

This is appears to be the biggest proposed reform to Quebec language law since Bill 101, and the biggest one almost certain to pass.

Observations from a slow reader:
It's 100 pages long.


"The purpose of this bill is to affirm that the only official language of Québec is French. It also affirms that French is the common language of the Québec nation."
The opening pages of the bill contain several pages of clauses to reinforce the use of French in public services.
Provincial judges will not be required to speak anything but French, for example, with some exceptions.
Read 21 tweets
7 Apr
The National Advisory Committee on Immunization’s latest update recommends a four-month delay between first and second doses to cover as many people as possible, as long as the vaccine shortage persists. canada.ca/content/dam/ph…
The Council of Chief Medical Officers of Health for the provinces, territories and Canada has sent out a statement endorsing the recommendation. No surprise given most of them have already adopted the long delay plan for most recipients.
NACI recommends going up to four months but emphasizes "second doses should be offered as soon as possible after all eligible populations have been offered first doses, with priority given to those at highest risk of severe illness and death from COVID-19 disease."
Read 4 tweets
7 Apr
A few dorky details on QC vaccination I found interesting from today's briefing with Health Minister Christian Dubé that may only be interesting to me and @mattgurney.

(Some of you will scream "Excuses!" please just assume I've heard you already.) +
For starters, it takes 24-72 hours minimum for vaccines to get into arms after unloaded from planes, sent to the distribution centre, inventoried, divided up, trucked out.
Time varies by vaccine and location. +
Pfizer: Arrives in quantity, on time, like clockwork. The last shipment of 230,000 doses arrived April 4 and is already out to vaccination centres getting injected. “When you see we have 40,000 in a day, it starts with Pfizer,” the minister said. +
Read 11 tweets
6 Apr
My fellow Quebecers. Having watched what's going on in Ontario these weeks, I'm here to tell you our vaccination campaign is about to enter a new phase. A jealous phase. An angry phase. montreal.ctvnews.ca/quebec-may-vac…
In coming days, you will see friends and acquaintances with not-that-essential jobs, and not-really-chronic illnesses hopping in for a shot. toronto.ctvnews.ca/there-will-abs…
My advice: Take a deep breath. Consider how important it must be to them to get the shot. Be glad they're doing (sort of) their civic duty and getting vaccinated. ottawacitizen.com/opinion/adam-p…
Read 7 tweets
6 Apr
Premier Legault opens his newser by saying it's somewhat surprising how stable Montreal has remained, but they are bringing in new preventative measures because it is likely just a matter of time.
Red zones like Montreal are going back to half-time in-person high school for senior years. Extra curicular activities like sports off again. Gyms closing. Crowds max 25 in places of worship.
This is all going back to the state three weeks ago. The premier is crediting public health for having the courage to go backward with new facts on the ground.
(This is epic spin. He is the decider.)
Read 11 tweets
6 Apr
Using a rough version of @bcshaffer's sawtooth analysis, it appears to me Quebec has gone from using vaccines within three days of delivery as recently as April 1, to at least six days (and counting) now.

Hopefully our very secular Easter is now behind us.
Longer delivery times when vaccines are arriving in greater quantities wouldn't bother me if vaccination hadn't topped out nearly two weeks ago. (March 26!) covid19tracker.ca/provincevac.ht…
I made a mistake on my count in the first tweet, as kindly pointed out by @pablonorm in his graphic below.

My point stands that this gap was shrinking and is now going to grow substantially unless shots ramp up quickly.
Read 4 tweets
6 Apr
Daniel Paré, the head of Quebec's vaccination campaign, told 98,5 this morning that 5,000 appointments were available but unused on the weekend in Montreal.

There are still 100,000 qualified people in Montreal who haven't booked yet.

No doses wasted, to be clear.
5,000 blank appointments is annoying but not a catastrophe. 100,000 people sitting on their hands is more concerning. Why?
This hesitancy is only going to grow as age groups get lower.
The part more bothersome than the 5000: Only 22,000 people got vaccinated in Quebec Sunday, despite what was supposed to be a push in the regions.

I understand it was a holiday, but the loss of momentum is bothersome. Anxious to see today's numbers.
Read 7 tweets
5 Apr
77% of Montrealers 60+ have had vaccines or will in the next few days. There will be a push outside the city this week, but it's incongruous that overall QC shots are dropping even as more doses arrive. Time to hear the plan for the next phase. lapresse.ca/covid-19/2021-…
Spent a bit of time this morning looking at the U.S. which (as everyone knows) is well ahead of us. Surpising to see how many jurisdictions have drastically dropped age with only 30-35% first shot coverage.
With 30-35% first-shot covarage, NY and Michigan are both dropping to 16+ this week.
Read 4 tweets
19 Jan
As foretold, primary school has been back in for 5 days, the school case count has skyrocketed mainly because schools have resumed counting, but...
Let’s just walk through It.
Let’s say little Johnny showed up at school Monday with a runny nose and his eagle eyed teacher caught it immediately.
Little Johnny goes home. Likely tested Tuesday earliest. Let’s say the system was lighting quick. Test result Wednesday earliest. 2
The earliest little Johnny shows up in the stats is Thursday assuming everything is this lightning quick.

So let’s say little Johnny gave it to classmate Marie. It usually takes 5-6 days to get symptoms, but let’s say Marie shows in 2 days. 3.
Read 5 tweets
16 Jan
Latest in a series of good pieces this week on the mixed evidence and expert opinion on the role of schools in the pandemic. But here’s what really got me in this one.... lesoleil.com/actualite/covi…
Through the fall, when schools had clusters of cases, public health would send in teams to mass-test the schools.

Trove of data right? Wrong! Image
Shout out to the three public health units and the principal of École Jeunes-du-Monde who appear to have kept some accounting. Image
Read 5 tweets
11 Jan
Quebec reports 835 active school cases as of Friday, before primary schools reopened. As of last Monday, the first day of online school, it was 90.

You can expect this spike to continue this week as school surveillance, one of its undervalued pandemic functions, kicks in. Image
There will be many people shouting how the spike that will take place this week proves schools are unsafe. Don't listen to them.
Just to be clear: Quebec's school cases rose from 90 to 835 in a week where all school was online for the simple reason students, parents and teachers were once again communicating.
They will now rise even more because teachers are watching.
Read 9 tweets
13 Nov 20
A pile of police have been deployed near Ubisoft for what has been reported so far as a hostage taking, an armed robbery, a bomb threat, and/or a large ransom demand.
An SPVM spokesperson says they are in "verification mode." No event has yet been confirmed.
It is quite unusual that at this stage there would be no information about the cause of a deployment this big.
Read 11 tweets
13 Nov 20
I have questions (and anxieties!) about closing Quebec schools for a month over the winter break. 1/
I understand why closing schools is tempting. Quebec has had an extended lockdown banning social visits and closing almost all recreational and entertainment activity. All we got is a month-long plateau in new cases at a high level followed now by the start of another rise. 2/
Deaths and hospitalizations are steadily rising. Something has to break and the government does not want to close more commercial activity, where 54% of outbreaks take place, compared to 15% for educational institutions.
Read 13 tweets
12 Nov 20
This is not to undercut a fine piece of reporting, but was anyone outside BC ever under the impression science had the last word on any of this? thestar.com/news/gta/2020/…
Even in BC when everyone was praising Dr. Henry for following best practices she was also engaged in a campaign of moral suasion (ie: politics) a large percentage of the time.
While I’m here, a couple people have pointed out Dr. Henry has declined to mandate masks and has rejected the covid app. Which, given BC has performed better than any province outside the Atlantic, illustrates science is only part of the answer.
Read 5 tweets
10 Aug 20
Quebec is updating the back to school plan it unveiled early in the summer. Ed Min Jean-François Roberge, Health Minister Christian Dubé and director of public health Horacio Arruda are presiding.
First an update on the computer system update that is causing Quebec stats delays: It's coming, Dubé says. Today. He promises.
98 new cases today. First time under 100 in a month.
Read 19 tweets
29 Jun 20
This is factually incorrect, from Mesley’s own account of events.

She was disciplined for using the N-word in a meeting after having been told her previous use of the word, then citing a book, had hurt colleagues.
The indomitable @nolore predicted Mesley’s admission of the incident involving Vallières’ book would “distract and confuse the issue, aided by Quebec distinct society analysts who will fully obscure what she has been reprimanded for.”

Spot on so far.
Many people are pointing out Durocher often has a passing relationship with facts, but she’s far from alone putting her energy into the Vallières aspect of the controversy.
Read 8 tweets
5 Jun 20
I’ve got a tedious old reporter story about this HOLD ON. 1.
I grew up in the boonies of Saskatchewan. My only knowledge of police was getting caught drinking in the bush while under age. It usually ended I spilled drinks.
Then I got into journalism and one of my first jobs was working at the Saskatoon StarPhoenix starting around 1996. 2.
When I got there, the paper had shed a lot of staff so as a rookie I was dealing with fallout from a couple of the most egregiously incompetent investigations and prosecutions in Canadian history. Google ‘ritual satanic abuse’. It was a thing. Add in Sask. for that chapter. 3.
Read 9 tweets
12 Mar 20
Quebec goes from 9 cases to 13, Premier François Legault says. It's time for the province to go into emergency mode, he says.
Premier François Legault is asking all people returning from foreign countries to put themselves in voluntary isolation for 14 days.
The premier is asking for the cancellation of all indoor events involving more than 250 people, and any other gathering that is not necessary.
Read 17 tweets
13 Apr 18
We've reached a pivotal point in the Alexandre Bissonnette police interrogation video at his sentencing hearing.
“Why did you chose that place?” the cop asks.
"I wanted to save people." Bissonnette answers.
From what?
"Terrorist attacks."
"Everything that happened, in Europe, in Canada, the United States. I told myself I could do something good," the killer says.
The officer asks Bissonnette if Donald Trump is in line with his values. The killer asks for clarification. Say on immigration? "On that, sure."
Read 8 tweets