Photo: Pedro Ruiz The Duty
Frantz Benjamin is a city councillor district of Saint-Michel in Montreal since 2009.
The Quebec liberal Party (QLP) has chosen a poet of haitian origin who wants to keep away from controversies, to try to succeed minister David Heurtel in Viau.
Frantz Benjamin, conseiller municipal du district Saint-Michel in Montreal since 2009, will be appointed candidate for the LIBERALS in the district’s multi-ethnic Viau, a fortress of the liberal of the north of the island of Montreal, on Thursday morning.
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On the sensitive issues of systemic racism and cultural appropriation, themes with which he is familiar for a long time, however, we should not expect to see Mr. Benjamin to stir up controversy or to adopt entrenched positions, if he is elected on the 1st October.
Mr. Benjamin describes himself rather as a man of moderate, careful, to the search for dialogue, consensus building and ” living together “.
In telephone interview to The canadian Press, on Wednesday, he refused consistently to vote on the recent cancellation of the show as a tribute to the songs of slaves, SLAV, following the protests of some members of the black community who saw it as a case of unacceptable cultural appropriation, and did not want to further comment on the cancellation, earlier this year, the consultation launched by the government on systemic racism.
“I’ve never been someone who stirs up [the controversy]. On the contrary, ” agreed the future liberal candidate, refusing to take sides or display its colors on these matters which closely affect.
“I’m going to reserve my comments” for later, “said the future candidate, calling it “complex,” a concept as systemic racism, ” if only on the terminology, it is complex “.
“There is a pedagogy to do that,” he added, without wanting to say if he had to go back to the load to conduct a consultation on the subject.
Born in Haiti in 1970 and settled in Quebec since 1986, he has been very active in the organizations of fight against racism, co-chaired in 2003 the first working Group in Montreal on racial profiling at the Centre for research-action on race relations (CRARR).
He said he was “very happy to live in a society where we can have open debates” on the issues of immigration, inclusion and cultural diversity, and trying to contribute to the debate, ” which is not finished “, ” constructively “.
On the plan of the inclusion of immigrants and openness to cultural diversity, he sees Quebec as a ” company copy “, albeit ” imperfect “.
“I was born in Haiti, but Saint-Michel this is my area of adoption,” said the future candidate, who describes himself first as a poet and a writer. He is the author of several books, including two collections of poems.
Minister David Heurtel, who has chosen not to seek a second term, had won a landslide victory in 2014, securing 62 percent of the vote. The CAQ had received the support of only 9% of voters.