Official Languages Consultations

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Federal institutions are often challenged in taking positive measures to enhance our community. Solutions could include establishing a community-managed cross-sectoral development fund. Closer intergovernmental collaboration and transparency by placing separate resource envelopes targeted to the community within bilateral agreements has also proven very effective

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Inflation is a fact of life for community sector organizations, but federal support is not indexed. For example, $3.77 million is allocated to our community by Canadian Heritage’s Cooperation with the Community Sector program; an amount set in 2008, which corrected for inflation in 2016 should be $4.23 million. The community sector does not have access to cash reserves and lines of credit, so when application decision and fund delivery standards are not met, organizational survival is often at stake. Finally, our community supports the requirement to be accountable for public money, and requests that reporting regimes be rationally designed with the limited capacity of the non-profit sector in mind.

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We need to ensure the ESCQ is able to participate as an equal at the national official languages table. This means resources to maintain policy expertise within sectors like youth, women, seniors, arts and culture, heritage, education, literacy, employment, economic development and entrepreneurship and access to justice

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Communities do not function in silos, and are often frustrated when dealing with governments that operate within institutional boundaries. Although much effort is expended in ensuring inter-institutional cooperation and ‘horizontal coordination’, community organizations interfacing with the federal partner on complex priorities are often left frustrated and their needs unmet

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The inherent diversity of the English-speaking Community of Quebec, and the multiple identities of many of its members must be accounted for by the Government of Canada, which in partnership with the community sector must assist English-speaking cultural communities faced with the challenge of being minorities within linguistic minorities

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Newcomer integration is being conducted by the ESCQ’s community sector and civil society. These activities are being done largely within the rubric of other programs and activities, or through private resources. And not enough attention is being paid by the federal partner to the migration of English-speaking Canadians to Quebec as a method of ensuring community renewal.

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Literacy in general must be approached in the widest possible way, and certainly beyond workplace skill development

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This means not only providing adequate funding, but also including the community as a real partner in research activities, while building internal community research capacity.

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Current strategies are built upon priorities, which are in turn usually assigned to specific institutions, who are appropriately resourced. Unfortunately, this leaves institutions not mentioned in official languages’ strategies without resources to fulfill Part VII commitments

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Responsibility for coordinating Canada’s official languages’ strategy must be accompanied by a centralized authority to ensure compliance from federal institutions. This is not a trait of the current approach with relies too heavily on encouraging and promoting coordination

WHAT OUR COMMUNITY NEEDS

Change the way resources are channeled to our community.

Federal institutions are often challenged in taking positive measures to enhance our community. Solutions could include establishing a community-managed cross-sectoral development fund. Closer intergovernmental collaboration and transparency by placing separate resource envelopes targeted to the community within bilateral agreements has also proven very effective;

Index federal support resources, adhere to service standards, and require less onerous reporting

Inflation is a fact of life for community sector organizations, but federal support is not indexed. For example, $3.77 million is allocated to our community by Canadian Heritage’s Cooperation with the Community Sector program; an amount set in 2008, which corrected for inflation in 2016 should be $4.23 million. The community sector does not have access to cash reserves and lines of credit, so when application decision and fund delivery standards are not met, organizational survival is often at stake. Finally, our community supports the requirement to be accountable for public money, and requests that reporting regimes be rationally designed with the limited capacity of the non-profit sector in mind.

Finance national level representation for community sector organizations and provide resources to develop and maintain sector policy expertise where gaps exist

We need to ensure the ESCQ is able to participate as an equal at the national official languages table. This means resources to maintain policy expertise within sectors like youth, women, seniors, arts and culture, heritage, education, literacy, employment, economic development and entrepreneurship and access to justice;

Create thematic inter-institutional programs and resources that address specific community needs

Federal institutions are often challenged in taking positive measures to enhance our community. Solutions could include establishing a community-managed cross-sectoral development fund. Closer intergovernmental collaboration and transparency by placing separate resource envelopes targeted to the community within bilateral agreements has also proven very effective;

Invest in youth engagement and retention through a targeted fund

Federal institutions are often challenged in taking positive measures to enhance our community. Solutions could include establishing a community-managed cross-sectoral development fund. Closer intergovernmental collaboration and transparency by placing separate resource envelopes targeted to the community within bilateral agreements has also proven very effective;

Target outreach programs to cultural communities

Federal institutions are often challenged in taking positive measures to enhance our community. Solutions could include establishing a community-managed cross-sectoral development fund. Closer intergovernmental collaboration and transparency by placing separate resource envelopes targeted to the community within bilateral agreements has also proven very effective;

Specific federal programs to attract and retain newcomers to our community

Newcomer integration is being conducted by the ESCQ’s community sector and civil society. These activities are being done largely within the rubric of other programs and activities, or through private resources. And not enough attention is being paid by the federal partner to the migration of English-speaking Canadians to Quebec as a method of ensuring community renewal. We propose that the new official language plan:

  • Require Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship (IRC) to clearly outline the ‘art of the possible’ related to the attraction and integration of newcomers to English-speaking Quebec;
  • Contain a plan to make our community know in the rest of the country and promote migration to Quebec by English-speaking Canadians.

Rebuild community-based literacy.

Federal institutions are often challenged in taking positive measures to enhance our community. Solutions could include establishing a community-managed cross-sectoral development fund. Closer intergovernmental collaboration and transparency by placing separate resource envelopes targeted to the community within bilateral agreements has also proven very effective;

Enable federal research to support community vitality

This means not only providing adequate funding, but also including the community as a real partner in research activities, while building internal community research capacity. The new official languages plan should ensure:

  • Federally funded research that is able to enhance and support Canada’s official languages should include linguistic dimensions (i.e. oversampling). For example, CMHS housing data, and the labour force survey are excellent sources of data, but of little use because they do not regularly contain a language dimension.
  • Statistics Canada must receive discreet funding to fully support its official languages data collection and analysis.
  • All federal institutions should have access to a strategic research to support Part VII related research developed in consultation with the community;

Create a Part VII implementation fund to ensure federal institutions not specifically mentioned (and funded) in the new plan have access to resources to fulfill their Part VII commitments

Current strategies are built upon priorities, which are in turn usually assigned to specific institutions, who are appropriately resourced. Unfortunately, this leaves institutions not mentioned in official languages’ strategies without resources to fulfill Part VII commitments;

Centralize authority to monitor the implementation of the official languages strategy.

Responsibility for coordinating Canada’s official languages’ strategy must be accompanied by a centralized authority to ensure compliance from federal institutions. This is not a trait of the current approach with relies too heavily on encouraging and promoting coordination;