Gree­tings from Saint-La­zare... but on­ly upon request

L'Etoile - - IN OTHER WORDS -

Saint-La­zare mayor Pierre Ka­ry re­cent­ly an­noun­ced that he will help re­si­dents ce­le­brate mi­les­tone events but on­ly if an of­fi­cial request is sub­mit­ted to the town in a ti­me­ly fa­shion.

The town an­noun­ced last week that anyone li­ving in Saint-La­zare who wants mayo­ral well wishes will re­ceive per­so­nal­ly si­gned stan­dard size let­ters. Such do­cu­ments will be mai­led to help ce­le­brate the birth of a child, a wed­ding or a si­gni­fi­cant wed­ding an­ni­ver­sa­ry.

Saint-La­zare com­mu­ni­ca­tions di­rec­tor Ge­ne­viève Ha­mel said the po­li­cy re­places an old one where on­ly re­si­dents hol­ding spe­cial events at the Saint-La­zare Catholic Church re­cei­ved the gree­tings (in the form of a card with the town's lo­go on front.)

"The pre­vious ad­mi­nis­tra­tion used to send a card to all people who had chil­dren or got married in Saint-La­zare... We had an agree­ment with the Catholic church, who sent us the names of the people who held their events there," she said.

But since si­mi­lar re­quests to other churches in the area did not yield re­sults, the current ad­mi­nis­tra­tion felt it was not "ap­pro­priate to on­ly send no­tices to Ca­tho­lics."

Since it an­noun­ced the new po­li­cy last week, Ha­mel says the town has re­cei­ved more than a half-do­zen re­quests for mayo­ral let­ters.

The prac­tice is po­pu­lar in Eu­ro­pean towns, as well as with Ca­na­da's prime mi­nis­ter and go­ver­nor ge­ne­ral, and with pro­vin­cial pre­miers, Ha­mel no­ted.

"When my pa­rents ce­le­bra­ted their 50th wed­ding an­ni­ver­sa­ry, (our fa­mi­ly) re­ques­ted and re­cei­ved let­ters from (prime mi­nis­ter) Ste­phen Har­per, (pre­mier) Jean Cha­rest, and the go­ver­nor ge­ne­ral of Ca­na­da," she said.

The fa­mi­ly had the do­cu­ments fra­med for the couple.

Re­quests, which can be sub­mit­ted in per­son, through an on­line form or faxed, must be gi­ven to the town at least th­ree weeks in ad­vance. For in­for­ma­tion, call 450 424-8000.

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