QC launches Cloutier Commission to develop guidelines affecting academic freedom

August 27, 2021
The Government of Quebec has launched a special commission that is tasked with developing guidelines that will affect the freedom of university professors to discuss sensitive issues or use controversial words. The Cloutier Commission will lay out the roles and obligations of students, teachers, universities, and government. It will also decide if elected officials should be asked to adopt a law providing a better framework for contentious issues. The commission has begun public consultations and has sent a questionnaire to 33,000 professors and lecturers. “There's no doubt,” said Alexandre Cloutier, vice-rector of the Université du Québec à Chicoutimi, “that concern has spread to the classrooms of our universities, whether it's the prevailing chill around the words used, the topics addressed or the choices of guest speakers. The risk of giving in to self-censorship seems to be very present.” CTV News (QC)