Legault, Plante need to do more about gun violence in Montreal, critics charge

Two of Legault’s rivals mentioned Quebec is not doing sufficient to scale back gun violence within the metropolis. Plante, in the meantime, was accused by the Montreal cops’ union of not supporting the division.

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Premier François Legault and Mayor Valérie Plante have been criticized Thursday for not doing sufficient to sort out the issue of armed violence on the island of Montreal.

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Two of Legault’s political rivals — Liberal Chief Dominique Anglade and Conservative Chief Éric Duhaime — have been in Montreal saying Quebec must do extra to scale back gun violence within the metropolis. Plante, in the meantime, was accused by the union representing Montreal cops of not supporting the police division.

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The Montreal Police Brotherhood mentioned the town doesn’t have sufficient officers to adequately defend Montrealers.

Two males have been killed Tuesday in brazen daytime shootings half-hour aside — one at Rockland Procuring Centre in City of Mount Royal, the opposite at Napoli Pizzeria on St-Denis St. within the Quartier Latin district.

“I’m not good. You’ll be able to criticize me on many issues, however to query my dedication, my seek for options, the way in which I’m at all times on the bottom … I discover it tough and, for me, it’s flawed,” Plante mentioned at a information convention Thursday the place she was inaugurating a park.

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Conservative Party of Quebec Leader Éric Duhaime speaks in Montreal North on Thursday August 25, 2022.
Conservative Occasion of Quebec Chief Éric Duhaime speaks in Montreal North on Thursday August 25, 2022. Picture by John Mahoney /Montreal Gazette

Politicians from all ranges of presidency known as Thursday for extra to be finished to handle armed violence within the metropolis.

At a information convention exterior Napoli Pizzeria Thursday morning, Anglade mentioned Legault ought to have finished extra in response.

“This isn’t being taken critically,” she mentioned. “I used to be baffled by the truth that the premier yesterday simply despatched a tweet and was on a Zoom name to speak in regards to the scenario. What this case requires is presence, at the start, folks to be on the bottom — perceive what the problems are and discover the fitting options.”

Legault on Wednesday posted an image on Twitter of himself in an internet assembly with Public Safety Minister Geneviève Guilbault, and mentioned he had additionally spoken to Plante in regards to the two homicides. Legault mentioned his authorities wouldn’t permit Montreal to turn out to be “a taking pictures vary for gangs” and that it might not maintain again on discovering methods to revive order.

“We are going to assist our police forces to convey this violence to an finish,” he mentioned.

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However Anglade mentioned there are answers that aren’t being thought of, including that she not too long ago met with neighborhood teams in her using that mentioned they don’t have the means to counter armed violence.

“We wish to see an funding in prevention,” Anglade mentioned. “And that’s what we’re committing to do as a political occasion: funding in prevention, funding in police drive, and funding in financing the town to allow them to even have the means to battle the scenario round violence.”

Afterward Thursday, Duhaime echoed his Liberal counterpart’s critique of Legault.

“It’s all nicely and good to ship tweets by political attachés or to make statements on the web, however I feel the very first thing to do is to return with the inhabitants, to really feel the folks, to speak to the folks, to satisfy the native stakeholders. I hope the premier of Quebec will try this,” Duhaime mentioned.

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The Conservative chief instantly pledged $62 million to the town of Montreal to rent 400 cops, a purpose he mentioned could possibly be achieved in a single or two years.

Though against state intervention on precept, Duhaime attracts the road relating to regulation and order: “The federal government at the moment interferes with the whole lot, nevertheless it doesn’t intervene with what is crucial and elementary.”

After assembly with St-Denis St. enterprise house owners Tuesday to guarantee them “no effort shall be spared by all of our companions to battle in opposition to the rise in gun crimes in Montreal,” Plante shared numerous actions within the works on her social media pages Wednesday.

They embody recruitment on the police academy, higher working situations for Montreal cops and an elevated variety of social staff within the subject. She famous these efforts are along with, amongst different issues, the hiring of greater than 280 officers, prevention tasks underway by $17 million in funding from the Canadian authorities, and accelerating the weapons buyback program.

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“Since yesterday, I’ve been in fixed contact with the premier of Quebec, François Legault, and the prime minister of Canada, Justin Trudeau,” Plante mentioned Wednesday. “They affirm to me that the whole lot that may contribute to the safety of Montreal shall be finished.”

However Québec solidaire co-spokesperson Gabriel Nadeau-Dubois mentioned not sufficient is being finished to handle the problem of gun violence within the metropolis. He mentioned Montreal “just isn’t and has by no means been” a precedence for Legault.

“I perceive the priority of the inhabitants and I share it: the bleeding should cease,” Nadeau-Dubois mentioned. “The shootings perpetrated up to now few days by organized crime are the straw that broke the camel’s again. Motion have to be taken now in order that the police are capable of do their job correctly within the battle in opposition to organized crime. … The place was François Legault’s CAQ all through his time period within the Nationwide Meeting?”

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The occasion famous police forces are sometimes overwhelmed by psychosocial work, having to cope with the unhoused and psychological well being crises and different such points. It’s proposing the next allocation of sources to neighborhood teams to let officers give attention to organized crime.

“Combined patrols might specifically be promoted,” mentioned Alexandre Leduc, Québec solidaire MNA for Hochelaga-Maisonneuve. “A Québec solidaire authorities may also put all of the stress on the federal authorities to speed up the ban on handguns, thus responding to the request of the town of Montreal.”

Ensemble Montréal, the opposition occasion at metropolis corridor, mentioned it has lengthy known as for extra combined patrols, including that the inhabitants wants “concrete gestures” proper now.

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“We’ve requested to enhance, even double, combined squads for points with psychological well being, issues with homelessness, of conjugal violence,” mentioned Abdelhaq Sari, the occasion’s spokesperson for public safety.

In a Thursday morning replace, the Montreal police mentioned it had no information to share about both of Tuesday’s shootings.

“The investigation is ongoing in each instances,” mentioned Sgt. Raphaël Bergeron. “Nonetheless no suspect arrests in each recordsdata. … The investigators are engaged on the recordsdata as a way to acquire the utmost quantity of data.”

Presse Canadienne contributed to this report.

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