Protest at St. Lambert IGA as Manager Suspended – Meaghan Moran Louise Menard June 29, 2013

Protest at St. Lambert IGA as Manager Suspended – Meaghan Moran Louise Menard June 29, 2013

iga fb protestCFN – Nearly 100 protesters showed up at the St. Lambert Quebec IGA Friday night where 17 year old Meaghan Moran had quit her job after recording an exit interview where a manager suggested that the store could not tolerate English being spoken during breaks between staff.

A press release stated that the manager had been suspended;

After listening to the entire audio recording broadcast by a number of media outlets today, Louise Ménard, the owner of IGA Marché Ménard, has decided to suspend the manager who mishandled the situation.  Louise Ménard acknowledged that some information had not been properly communicated in her store. She will meet immediately with the store’s management staff and employees to clearly reiterate the rules governing verbal communication in the workplace.Ms. Ménard emphasized that there is absolutely no rule prohibiting English (or any other language) from being spoken in her Saint-Lambert store.
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According to Ms. Ménard, this unfortunate situation need not have occurred. “If this incident has in any way hurt or angered anyone, I sincerely apologize. I hope to now turn the page and continue to do what is most important to me   — provide our customers with excellent service in the language of their choice,” she concluded.
Frankly to this scribbler that sounds an awful like some professionally paid for damage control.
Ms Menard herself has not apologised and frankly making the manager the fall guy seems kinda punk.  Sobey’s issued a PC kinda statement too; but the bottom line is a firm real reaction is needed to this sort of utterly unacceptable linguistic terrorism.
Ms Moran is owed an apology from Ms Menard as is the public.   Less spin more action please.
From Norman Simon, one of the protesters;

“Good evening, all!

Well, we all went to the IGA earlier this evening and about 80 people were present. Everyone was enthusiastic about supporting Meghan Moran and we were very upset with the IGA policy of not allowing freedom of choice when it comes to language usage.
I spoke with Pierre, the evening manager, telling him who I was and what I was doing there. I mentioned that we were to have a protest rally outside the store and he was taken aback and seemed flustered by it. I mentioned what we wanted: Mme Menard to personally apologize for the incident; a clear policy of language tolerance; the manager involved to either be transferred to another branch or dismissed; and some compensation offered to Meghan. He said he could not speak for Mme Menard.

While I was speaking to him, a man who had been hanging around and listening, opened his mouth and told the manager that this is now the 3rd time this has occurred that he knows of, citing his nephew who evidently had a similar experience there at the supermarket. He said he was born in St. Lambert and was shocked that English could be dismissed so easily.

When we were outside the store, we waved Canadian flags and posters/placards demanding freedom of choice, banning language laws, freedom of speech and self-expression. We shouted, No way, IGA!” and other slogans we made up along the way. Cars came by and honked and we cheered! It was all very uplifting.

Finally, a policeman came over to us and admitted that the manager had called him to complain about our demonstration, but we reminded him that we had not entered the store, nor had we prevented shoppers from gaining entry. I told him why we were there and when he said there were 3 sides to a story – the 3rd being the truth, I asked him if he has listened to Meghan’s tape or seen her on CTV. He replied that he hadn’t, so I told him to listen to it and watch the clip, then he would see the truth. He was very nice to us after that and made no trouble.

We finally dispersed back to our homes and we all feel that we helped out the community. We really need each other more than I can express and I want to urge everyone out there to ease up on each other. Get together with us and let’s put great pressure on the government to show them what asses they are and it’s time for a new beginning in Quebec and in Canada as a whole.

I urge you all to join me, Jacob, Alina, and our friends at Howard Galganov’s rights rally on Sunday at high noon with all your friends! Let’s all make a difference!

Have a great weekend!”

CFN original piece with link to video.

What do you think viewers of CFN?  Is the manager the fall guy?  Should there be some sort of action against Ms Menard?  Should she have to publicly apologize and remedy the situation?  Is this yet another  isolated incident or systemic of Quebec culture today?

You can post your comments below.

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