Canadians for Language Fairness

End the unfairness of official bilingualism. Stop wasting our tax dollars.

Friday June 5, 2015

Update On Bill C-232 Now Bill C-208


Someone sent me this link on Bill C-232 (Yvon Godin’s bill to make the Supreme Court judges mandatorily bilingual - English & French).  A debate conducted on this bill by TVO by Steve Paikin:

I was curious about this bill because I had not been able to find the update on this bill so I wrote to Karen Selick:

Your part in the debate was very good, so was the guest - Professor Dennis Baker of the U of Guelph.

If you have the time to write a small message on this bill and what has happened to it, I would appreciate it.  There are always people on our distribution list who support your work and this could encourage some people to contribute to the CCF - I plan to send a contribution as I do admire your work.  Can you also give me the email of Prof. Baker - I’d like to contact him too.  We have so few members of the intelligentsia who are willing to speak up for English-speaking Canada - it is so good to come across the few who do exist.  The French have NO shortage of supporters from the intelligentsia  - ALL of them are fighting for more French rights and they are heard so often that it is NO wonder that French-speakers are winning this battle.

President (CLF)


I Googled the bill and this is what I found:

Private Member’s Bill

40th Parliament, 3rd Session

March 3, 2010 - March 26, 2011

Text of the Bill

Latest Publication

All Published Versions

Bill Reinstated

This bill has been reinstated from:

40th Parliament, 2nd Session


An Act to amend the Supreme Court Act (understanding the official languages)


Yvon Godin (Acadie-Bathurst)

Last Stage Completed

Second Reading in the Senate (2011-03-22)


Coming Into Force

Status of the Bill

Status Overview

Additional Information

Speaker’s Rulings and Statements Major Speeches

About this Bill

Departmental Information Legislative Summary Further Reading

“This bill comes into force when it receives Royal Assent.”


That upset me quite a bit until I contacted Karen & complained that the above posting made me think that the bill had received approval from the Senate.  She sent me the updated information as Bill C-232 is now Bill C-208.

From: Karen Selick

Sent: June 3, 2015 9:29 AM

To: Kim McConnell

Subject: Bill C-232 (Supreme Court judges must be bilingual)


There was an election on May 2, 2011.  Parliament was dissolved on March 26, 2011, four days after the last senate hearing on the bill was held, and before they ever got to the third vote. So the bill was not passed by the 40th parliament, 2nd session. This is what the link you sent me shows.

There is a lottery system for private member’s bills, which is the type of bill that this was. Such bills don’t automatically get carried over to the new parliament after an election.  They have to be re-introduced by a sponsor who is a member sitting in the new parliament. 

This link appears to show that a similar bill (now called C-208) was introduced in the session of parliament before this one (41st Parliament, 1st session), but didn’t  progress very far in the Commons. 

In the 2nd session of the 41st Parliament, the bill was defeated at second reading in a vote held in May, 2014.  So it is a dead issue. See this link:

Please, if you are sending me something addressed specifically to me, as opposed to a mass mailing, put my name in the header or I might not read it. I get a lot of mass mailings and don’t have time to read them all.



June 4, 2015

Kim, that is not misinformation on the internet.  It correctly describes what happened during the 2nd session of the 40th parliament. That’s why they leave it there.  You just have to research when the next election was, and if you know enough about how parliament works, you can deduce that the bill never passed because that session of parliament ended shortly afterwards.

By the way, even though I have called C-208 a dead issue, it could still resurface after the election in October 2015, especially if that same MP Yvon Godin gets re-elected.  He might try to push it through again as a private member’s bill.  If the NDP gets into power, I would not be surprised to see them adopt it as a government bill. 

Thanks in advance for your donation.



We are very lucky to have access to Karen Selick and her organization.  The CCF was an intervenor in our attempts to get justice for the beleaguered English-speaking Canadians who are being unfairly treated by the 1982 Constitution which was written to favour the French-speaking Canadians.  If you have a few dollars to spare, please consider donating to the CCF.

President (CLF)


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