It’s not often that we’re able to tell you about happy events like the above because our main issue of the language problem is still on-going and the news on that front are not happy ones. It is really very sad when we see so much action coming from the French elite, pushing and pushing for more French (which they pretend is “bilingualism”) and using their massive access to taxpayer funds with the support of the courts (and the 1982 Constitution), to be able to demand so much attention. Of course the full support of the French media (which is also funded, BTW) to reach the French & encourage them to make full use their advantage & complain about their “right to communicate in French everywhere they go” does help. Our English media prefers to keep silent on this issue - I don’t know why. I wonder if it’s out of fear of the French activists who can be very nasty or are we, the English speakers to blame for not caring enough?
Their battle is already won in Quebec where they have passed anti-English laws with impunity, pushing out more and more English-speakers unless they are willing to support the French-dominant agenda.
The battle in New Brunswick & most of Eastern Canada is raging because more English-rights groups are working to mount a rally on May 8th, 2015, in Fredericton:
Equal Rights for New Brunswick Anglophones (ERNBA), Democratic Protection League (DPL)
For info, contact: firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com
Talking about New Brunswick, this just came in so I’m including it to show you how utterly ridiculous the language battle has become. Yvon Godin does not want English-speaking students to ride on the same school-buses as the French-speaking students in case the latter group gets contaminated by the former group. In other words, he wants SEGREGATION and then he says that he wants a united Canada - where is this NDPer coming from?
They must have lots of money in N.B. to be able to waste so much of it duplicating services. Just another unfortunate fallout from Trudeau’s 1982 Constitution, I’m afraid!!!
In Ontario, we have our own problems - the French are determined to impose Official Bilingualism status on the City of Ottawa and once that’s done, the rest of Ontario is easy picking.
On June 26th, 2003 an article by Mohd. Adam in the Ottawa Citizen wrote: “McGuinty: I’ll make Ottawa bilingual”. This article is available upon request.
Dalton McGuinty replied in a letter to the Ottawa Citizen, June 27th, 2003, and said, “Bilingual Ottawa is just symbolic……In 2001, the City of Ottawa passed a bylaw that put into place what's been called "practical bilingualism." It allows the city to operate in both languages as deemed necessary. It is a policy that is highly effective and successful. I support it and would not pass any provincial law that would interfere with it.”
Since then, the many well-funded French groups & French professors from the University of Ottawa have put pressure on the Mayors of Ottawa (both Larry O’Brien & Jim Watson) to use their powers to make Ottawa officially bilingual. Supported by Jean Chretien, Language Commissioner Graham Fraser and all the French leaders across Canada, including Senators & Judges, the goal is to accomplish this task by 2017 when Canada celebrates its 150 birthday.
Every time any French group gets together, this is the main theme: “make Ottawa officially bilingual” and even though Mayor Watson assures us that it won’t happen under his watch, who knows what will happen by 2017?
I have ample proof of this push - contact me if you want them all.
At the Summit of the States General of the Francophonie in Ottawa on 17 and 18 November 2012, official bilingualism was identified as the highest priority of the Francophone community. The participants indicated that the following were important :
Since February 2013 the Committee on Bilingualism is actively working to develop strategies and courses of action to advance the Ottawa Francophonie, and the situation of bilingualism in Canada's Capital.
Sébastien Pierroz - (March 24, 2014) reported that Mayor Watson said, “NO” to the French lobbies to make Ottawa “officially bilingual”.
City's bilingualism policy not working, Ottawa professor says ahead of book launch
The City of Ottawa’s bilingual policy is a “great deception” because it doesn’t provide francophones with recourse if they feel they have legitimate complaints, says Pierre Foucher, a law professor at the University of Ottawa.
Ottawa’s policy to provide bilingual service just doesn’t do enough in the city where bilingualism is “most lived,” said Foucher, who, along with co-editor Richard Clément, is to launch a book looking back at 50 years of bilingualism in Canada on Wednesday.
Mayor Jim Watson told the Citizen in August he opposed legal bilingual status for the city, and said the existing bilingualism policy was “very good.”
But Foucher says a bilingualism policy doesn’t have the same teeth as an official bilingual designation in law, which requires an act by the Province of Ontario.
Parts of Ottawa’s francophone community have pushed for the city and province to co-operate on an official bilingual designation for years, he said, calling it a “no brainer.”
“It’s not that expensive and it’s not that complicated,” he said, adding the city’s current policy on bilingualism could be changed by council or ignored by staff without legal consequences.
Foucher and Clément’s book, Fifty Years of Official Bilingualism, includes 14 short chapters written by policymakers and watchers from across Canada on the evolution of bilingualism in Canada since the Royal Commission on Bilingualism and Biculturalism recommended a sweeping transformation of bilingual policy in the country in the late 1960s.
The commission “changed the way that we think about ourselves,” said Foucher.
Canada has made great strides in addressing bilingualism issues in the past 50 years, but challenges remain across the country said Clément, who holds the University of Ottawa’s Canada Research Chair on Bilingualism and Society.
Accessing French-language education can still be difficult for francophones in parts of Canada, including Ontario, he said.
Foucher and Clément’s book will be launched at a reception between 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Wednesday in room 129 of the University of Ottawa’s Simard Hall, at 60 University Private.
Someone alerted me to an article by Ron Corbett of the Ottawa Sun - Mr. Corbett is one of the few columnists who does not ignore the language issue. He wrote about a very special lady, Dr. Marguerite Ritchie, one of the few in the public eye who has the courage of her convictions and is not afraid to speak up on issues that bother her. She has been a firm supporter of our cause and we salute & thank her for her continual support.
Other articles by Ron Corbett on the language issue are available upon request.
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