BILL 96 AND THE DEAF: THE UNINTENDED CONSEQUENCES OF LEGISLATION

Quebec recently unveiled plans to make substantial changes to the Charter of the French Language through Bill 96, An Act respecting French, the official and common language of Québec. The purpose of Bill 96 is “to affirm that the only official language of Quebec is French.” It also affirms that French is the common language of the Quebec nation. Bill 96 pre-emptively invokes Section 33 (the notwithstanding clause) of the federal Charter of Rights and Freedoms, which would shield the Charter of the French Language from judicial review.  In a nutshell, Quebecers will lose their fundamental freedoms, legal, and equality rights in the application of the Charter of the French Language.

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