Jolaine Paradis-Châteauneuf - Parti Québécois
Name: Jolaine Paradis-Châteauneuf
Born and raised in Outaouais, Jolaine Paradis-Châteauneuf has long standing roots in the region. She completed her CEGEP and university studies in Gatineau and is a social worker for CISSS Outaouais. Her first hand experience working in the health and social services sector, as well as her desire to contribute to social change motivated her to go into politics.
“As a social worker, values like social justice, equal opportunity and the well-being of youth [and other populations] motivate me to advocate for the reopening of the [obstetrics] clinic in Shawville, to improve working conditions for healthcare workers, and to reduce wait times for everyone. Youth in particular should not have to wait over a year for social services”.
Party: Parti Québécois (PQ)
Political spectrum: Centre-left
View on Quebec sovereignty: The Parti Québécois believes that Québec should become an independent nation and Paradis-Châteauneuf said that she supports this aim, “Sovereignty is the key to advancing Quebec. We need to make our own decisions and to have the money we need in our pocket. It is not about being drastic, it is about having what belongs to us, managed by us.”
Paradis-Châteauneuf is committed to improving the delivery of healthcare services in the Outaouais area through a multipronged approach. In addition to attracting new healthcare professionals to the region by increasing salaries she hopes to improve working conditions for healthcare workers already employed in the region. This involves improving the doctor to nurse as well as nurse to patient ratio among other recommendations that have been put forward by healthcare professional unions.
More systemic changes to the delivery of healthcare services will involve investing 460$ million dollars a year in community health institutions such as CLSCs, and programs to provide home-care for the elderly. Her party will also seek to broaden the scope of care certain healthcare professionals are licensed to provide in overlapping areas of care, in order to take pressure off of emergency rooms as a first line of care and reduce wait times for essential services.
Paradis-Châteauneuf said that she is in favour of decentralizing the healthcare system and wants to give more decision making power to health professionals. She finds the closure of the obstetrics unit at the Shawville hospital to be unacceptable and if elected will push to reopen it quickly.
Protecting the environment is a priority for Paradis-Châteauneuf. As a practical measure to reduce our collective impact on the environment, her party plans to make public transportation more accessible across the province by introducing a “PasseClimat” which will allow residents to use all forms of public transportation across Quebec for $1 a day or $365 per year. She said that this will allow residents to travel more easily within and between regions and will promote local business in rural areas. Her party also supports electric transportation, and will provide further incentives for individuals’ purchase of electric vehicles. In addition, Paradis-Châteauneuf said that she supports subsiding costs associated with homes switching from natural gas to electric heating in order to further reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the province.
Paradis-Châteauneuf finds that the physical condition of schools have been declining over the past several years and is committed to renovating and improving the quality of elementary and secondary schools in the Outaouais.
She said that 63 post-secondary education programs are missing in the Pontiac riding and wants to work towards increasing the range of programs offered in order to help students to study and work locally. Paradis-Châteauneuf also wants to enhance literacy education in the region, especially improving the quality of French education for newcomers. In addition, she said that she will help promote a more balanced teacher-to-student ratio as well as improve the working conditions for educational support workers. She considers improved after-school programs and daycare services to be an important priority and also wants to improve the quality of support that students with special needs receive as well.
Language and Diversity (Bill 96, Bill 21):
When asked about Bill 96 Paradis-Châteauneuf said that the French language is an important part of Quebec’s identity and that it is necessary to take steps to protect it. She said that she felt the bill does not go far enough and that more is needed to promote the French language such as applying the provisions of Bill 101 to Cegeps. She believes that Bill 96 and any additional measures that would be taken by the Parti Québécois are meant to protect the language and are not made to infringe on the rights of Anglophones in the province.
When asked about Bill 21 Paradis-Châteauneuf said that she did not feel that the law affects the rights of religious minorities but promotes equality before the state.