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QS calls on government to create emergency fund for farmers

Photo: Jacques Boissinot The Canadian Press “The last season was catastrophic, and 2024 promises to be difficult too,” declared Gabriel Nadeau-Dubois.

The Canadian Press

April 7, 2024

  • Quebec

In response to the crisis currently hitting the agricultural sector in Quebec, Québec solidaire (QS) is asking the Coalition Avenir Québec (CAQ) government to create an emergency fund for farmers in anticipation of harvest season.

At the end of March, Prime Minister François Legault called the difficulties facing farmers a “crisis,” and promised to help them more. However, according to QS co-spokesperson Gabriel Nadeau-Dubois, the government must act more quickly.

“We cannot wait for the next budget to give agricultural producers some breathing room. Of course, there are many things to do, there are many programs to review, and there are issues that will not be resolved in a few days. But one action that the Prime Minister must take quickly is to release an emergency fund to provide immediate financial assistance to agricultural producers who need it, because the last season was catastrophic, and 2024 is coming. difficult too,” he detailed in an interview.

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Several farmer protests have taken place in different regions of the province in recent weeks. On Friday, the Federation of the Union of Agricultural Producers (UPA) of Montérégie held a demonstration in Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, where more than a hundred tractors circulated in the streets. Mr. Nadeau-Dubois was on the scene.

“I've done a lot of protests in my life, but I've never seen so much distress in a protest, [what] I saw on Friday,” he said . I have never seen this in a demonstration of 40, 50 year old men having to interrupt their speech because they start to cry. »

The QS co-spokesperson believes that the amount of the emergency fund must be determined in discussion with agricultural producers. However, he considers that the amount allocated to agriculture in the latest government budget is insufficient.

“Agricultural producers are being hit hard by climate change, and they are a bit like the canaries in the mine. It is the first sector of the economy to be hit so hard, but gradually, all sectors of the economy will end up being hit,” said Mr. Nadeau-Dubois.

The Fédération de l'UPA de la Montérégie plans to hold a new demonstration on Wednesday in Vaudreuil-Dorion, and another on Friday on the site of the Saint-Hyacinthe Agricultural Expo.

Teilor Stone

By Teilor Stone

Teilor Stone has been a reporter on the news desk since 2013. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining Thesaxon , Teilor Stone worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my teilor@nizhtimes.com 1-800-268-7116