Austerity and economy in Quebec

Many in English Canada recognize the CCPA, but relatively few know of IRIS. Tucked away in an old Montreal school that has been repurposed as a home for a wide array of social enterprises and NGOs, IRIS, or the Insitut de recherché et d’informations socio-economiques, has now been producing important progressive research in French for 15 years. Sadly little known outside Quebec, IRIS and its researchers have explored everything from widening inequality to resource extraction to the damage that austerity has done to Quebec’s historically more robust welfare state.

This week, I sat down with Julia Posca and Eve-Lyne Couturier, two IRIS researchers. Our conversation spans everything from the austerity agenda in Quebec to the response from the province’s social movements to the renewed push towards resource extraction in the North. Julia and Eve-Lyne provide image of Quebec that has its particularities but is also coming to terms with many of the same issues facing the rest of Canada.

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