In 1960 Jean Lesage is elected, and the quiet revolution begins. The quiet revolution was a period of huge socio-cultural and political change. One of the main events of the revolution was the Quebecois government opened ministries of health and education, taking control from the church. Additionally huge investments in to the educational and provincial infrastructure helped to improve the province. Quebec nationalized electricity production + distribution. The voting age lowered and due to better control over money, the budget went from $745 million to $2.1 billion during the revolution.
On October 5 1970, a British diplomat James Cross was kidnapped, along with premier deputy Pierre Laporte. Members of the Front de libération du Québec, a separatist terrorist group kidnapped the men as an attempt to both get ransom money from the government, and, to have their manifesto broadcast on live radio. Their actions were met with a quick response from the government and the prime minister Pierre Trudeau invoked the only peacetime usage of the war measures act, giving the government and police far reaching powers. The kidnappers murdered Laporte before the government could save him, negotiations led to the kidnappers freeing Cross and being exiled to Cuba. The use of violence helped to accelerate the movement towards Quebec's independence.
The Parti Québécois is a sovereignist and social democratic political party in Quebec. They were created in 1968 and, their primary political goal is to obtain political, economic, and social autonomy and independence for all of Quebec. They wish to establish a sovereign state of Quebec seperate from canada.
Vive le Québec libre
On July 24 1967 while visiting Canada, French President Charles de Gaulle gave a speech from the Montreal City Hall saying "Vive Montreal! Vive le Quebec! Vive le Quebec libre!" Meaning Long Live Montreal. Long live Quebec. Long live free Quebec. This was a highly controversial move as it was seen as Charles de Gaulle giving his full support to the movement of Quebec Sovereignty, which was a large breach of diplomatic protocol. Prime Minister Lester Pearson condemned the speech saying that Canadians did not need to be liberated.
1977 Bill 101
Bill 101 is a 1977 law, that when introduced officially defined French (which was the primary language of most of Quebecs Population) as the official language of their provincial government. This law is the central legislative piece in all of Quebec's language policy. This law was proposed under the first Parti Québécois government of René Lévesque. The law was passed by the National Assembly, and granted Royal Assent. The law expanded upon the 1974 official language act. The passing of the bill was met with a large amount of controversy, mainly by the English-Speaking majority of Canadians, although they were a minority in Quebec. Additionally Pierre Trudeau did not like the law, believing it was contrary to the Federal Governments mandate bilingualism. Finally another consequence of this law was the resulting move of many countries headquarters from Montreal to Toronto removing thousands of jobs and causing the fleeing of more businesses.
1980 Quebec Referendum
The 1980 Quebec Referendum was the very first referendum in Quebec on whether Quebec should pursue sovereignty or not. It was called by the Parti Québécois Government, who believed they should secede from Canada. The proposal to pursue the secession from Canada was defeated by the amount of 59.56 percent to 40.44 percent. After the Parti Québécois won the 1976 election they began to implement many popular reforms which would help many longstanding issues while also emphasizing their nationalism. After the referendum failed Prime Minister Trudeau, in a conference announced his intention to patriate the Canadian constitution from the United Kingdom, and to have a charter of rights as well as a constitution amending formula approved by a national referendum.
1991 Bloc Québécois
The Bloc Québécois is an informal coalition of progressive conservative and liberal members of parliament from Quebec. Originally the party was supposed to be temporary and their main goal was to promote and gain sovereignty at the federal level. They aimed to disband after gaining a successful referendum on secession from Canada. The party would go on to call the second referendum on independence. The Bloc Québécois and the Parti Québécois, they will commonly back each other during election campaigns, and the majority of each party's membership holds membership in both parties.
1995 Quebec Referendum
In 1995 Quebec held its second independence referendum. Asking voters whether Quebec should proclaim national sovereignty and thus become an independent country. Originally it was thought that it would the yes side would be heavily defeated, but after being taken over by Bloc Québécois leader Lucien Bouchard. The yes campaign rose quickly leading to uncertainty across Canada at the result. Voting featured the largest turnout in Quebec history, leading to the no side winning with 50.58% of votes.
2006 Quebec Solidaire
Quebec Solidaire is a political party in Quebec, they are democratic socialist social-democratic sovereignists. They were founded on February 4 2006 . The party has no leader instead practices collective leadership. Their goal is to unify the sovereignist left of the political spectrum in Quebec by merging the union des forces progressistes with the option citoyenne social movement. Additionally they advocate independence from Canada, environmentalism, social justice, feminism, proportional representation, participatory democracy, aboriginal rights and alter-globalism. Upon founding the congress adopted a document called the declaration de principes, which lays out principles and values of the organisation. It does not specifically endorse social democracy, communism or socialism.