Working relationships with Civil Society Organizations

The QSU participates in a number of collectives and discussion groups alongside a diverse group of civil society organizations to address important sociopolitical issues. These groups include:

Youth Consultative Committee

The Youth Consultative Committee (Comité consultatif Jeunes) is intended to support actions by Emploi-Québec and inform the Commission of Labour Market Partners and Ministry of Labour, Employment and Social Solidarity about the employment issues affecting youth in Quebec. To do so, it assists in establishing action priorities for Emploi-Québec and participates in following up and evaluating its interventions. It is composed of 16 recognized and representative national youth organizations with missions to promote and support the development of young people aged 18 to 35. The briefs and recommendations produced by the Youth Consultative Committee are both public and accessible. They are the product of a collective process of reflection and collaboration among its many member organizations.

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Collective for a Quebec Without Poverty

The Collective for a Quebec Without Poverty (Collectif pour un Québec sans pauvreté) brings together 37 Quebec organizations, including grassroots, community, labour, religious, feminist, student and cooperative organizations, alongside regional collectives from most of Quebec’s regions. Each organization has a mandate to eliminate poverty, defend human rights, and promote social justice. The Collective has been working in close collaboration with individuals living in poverty since the very beginning.

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Organization to fight against Homophobia and Transphobia in Higher Education

The Organization to fight against Homophobia and Transphobia in Higher Education (Table nationale de lutte contre la transphobie et l’homophobie dans le réseau de l’éducation) was created to increase cooperation among stakeholders in education. It seeks to provide a better understanding of the realities lived by today’s youth, especially those who identify with diverse sexual and gender identities as well as intersex individuals. It also seeks to promote behaviours that can help prevent and counter the experience of bullying, violence, heterosexism, cissexism, cyberbullying, homophobia and transphobia among young people and staff members in schools, colleges and universities.

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Chantier de l’Économie sociale

The Chantier de l’économie sociale (Social Economy Working Group) seeks to create a plural economy that maximizes community benefits and defends common goods that directly address a community’s needs and aspirations. Social economy enterprises are governed collectively and support the economic, social, and cultural vitality of communities over time. The Chantier’s mission is to promote the social economy as an integral part of Quebec’s economic system and, in so doing, contribute to democratizing that system and support the emergence of a development model that is rooted in values of solidarity, equity, and transparency. The Chantier helps coordinate among different actors and partners within the social economy, both at the regional and national level, creates tools and conditions that help consolidate and develop new projects, and builds alliances with other socio-economic actors to promote that model.

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General Estates on Higher Education

The General Estates on Higher Education (États généraux de l’enseignement supérieur; ÉGES) are an opportunity to review the operation and mission of Quebec’s college and university networks after years of austerity budgets that have consolidated administrative staff in an increasingly managerial mindset, led by a governmental vision steeped in the logic of commodification. Organized by stakeholders in higher education, this event was created to share and disseminate analyses of the situation and to create links between groups and organizations that want to see changes in how the system of higher education is funded, administered, and developed in the interest of addressing factors that have distorted its core missions.

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Unité de travail pour l’implantation de logement étudiant (UTILE)

The Unité de travail pour l’implantation de logement étudiant (UTILE; Working Group on the Development of Student Housing) is a non-profit organization with a mandate to study, develop, and promote affordable cooperative student housing in Quebec. UTILE acts on three fronts: the promotion of student housing as an economically and socially beneficial field of action, especially for increasing access to education, sustainable urban development, and inter-regional equity; the development of a unique expertise in Quebec inspired by international best practices and rooted in entrepreneurship and innovation that benefits the public; and the creation of locally governed housing developments that will be self-funded and provide affordable rents.

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Coalition for Child Support Payments

For the past several years, the FAFMRQ has been seeking to end the practice of considering child support payments as a form of revenue in government programs. Even though these amounts have been considered a non-taxable income since 1997 (both provincially and federally), they continue to be counted as income for parents and guardians under four government programs: social assistance, student financial aid, the housing assistance program, and legal aid. In the 2019-2020 budget, the Minister of Finance, Éric Girard, announced a significant improvement to exemptions for child support payments, providing $28 million in additional support to families in need. This is a significant win for single-parent households who benefit from one or more of the four programs covered by this measure. However, it’s important to reiterate the FAFMRQ’s demand that no amount received as a child support payment program should be considered as a revenue under any of the government’s programs.

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Collectif Échec aux paradis fiscaux

The Collectif Échec aux paradis fiscaux [Put an End to Tax Havens] is a group dedicated to ending the national scandal of having the wealthiest individuals and companies in both Canada and Quebec hiding their assets in tax havens. Founded in 2011, Échec aux paradis fiscaux brings together labour, community, and student organizations. It makes use of popular mobilizations, public education, and collaborations with members of parliament. The Collectif is composed of Quebec labour federations, community organizations, and student associations.

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Solution étudiante nationale pour un scrutin équitable (SENSÉ)

The Solution étudiante nationale pour un scrutin équitable (SENSÉ; National Student Solution for Fair Voting) has only one purpose: promoting the mixed-member proportional system with compensation on a regional basis. SENSÉ exists to mobilize collegial and postsecondary students in favour of reforming the electoral system, to launch public debate, and to put pressure on Quebec’s opposition parties to make sure they respect their commitment for reform. SENSÉ also offers support to the Mouvement démocratie nouvelle.

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