Welcome again to everyone. For those from the townships, I can certainly understand some of the challenges you face. My mother was from Sherbrooke and my grandparents lived in Lac-Mégantic. I spent many a summer in Lac-Mégantic, and it was very difficult to find anyone who spoke English in the area. Of course, for me the purpose was to be fully immersed in French. As a franco-Ontarian from Toronto, it's not something you get to experience at home.
As with the English school boards, we faced many similar parallels as a French language minority in Toronto. Back then, it was, like those in the townships say, a minority within a minority within a majority situation. We had a small number of French schools in what was then the largest English school board in Canada in the largest English city in Canada.
In terms of the funding we got, it was not on par with what the English schools in our own school board were getting. One of the best things that happened was when we finally got our own school board, and then suddenly the money started to flow, which led to positive changes.
It's a challenge. In the townships, if the economic opportunities for highly mobile young people and those getting educated aren't at home, they'll have to go elsewhere. It's unfortunate, and it presents another challenge.
I'm going to veer off from discussing those things. In terms of speaking about equity, as we talked about earlier, we have in this committee, with virtually all of the French language groups in minority situations, asked about the importance of Radio-Canada to their communities in terms of being able to access French language programming. Of course, according to last week's budget, CBC is now facing some rather hefty cuts.
In Quebec, there's a little bit more English programming than there is French programming outside of Canada. I'm going to ask each group to talk about the importance that CBC brings to maintaining those English communities in your minority situations.
We'll start with the arts.