Editorial: Protecting Canada’s linguistic minorities

What Quebec is seeking is, essentially, for the federal government to abandon its role in promoting linguistic duality across Canada.

For English-speaking Quebecers, there is much that is alarming in the Quebec government’s vision of how the federal Official Languages Act should be modernized.

What Quebec is seeking from Ottawa is, essentially, for the federal government to abandon its role in promoting linguistic duality across Canada. Not only that, it is calling for an end to the Official Languages Act’s approach of symmetry between the country’s official language minorities.

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Statement from the Commissioner of Official Languages on the Government of Quebec’s position on the modernization of the Official Languages Act

Gatineau, Quebec – Commissioner of Official Languages Raymond Théberge made the following statement today:

“Today, I learned of the Quebec government’s position on the modernization of the Official Languages Act. I am pleased to see that the two levels of government are working together amicably to modernize the Act.

I believe that the situation of the French language in Canada is truly unique. Protecting the language and culture of more than 8 million French-speaking Canadians in a sea of more than 300 million English-speaking North Americans is a major challenge. However, it is fundamental to Canada’s linguistic duality and cultural identity.

The Official Languages Act protects the right of all Canadians to receive services in the official language of their choice, and these rights are guaranteed for both English-speaking Canadians and French-speaking Canadians.

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Only French should have official status as a minority language in Canada: CAQ

French should be the only language given official minority status in Canada, the Quebec government says.

In document sent to the federal government representing Quebec’s vision of the Official Languages Act, Intergovernmental Affairs Minister Sonia LeBel says French should be the only language recognized as needing to be protected and promoted across Canada, including Quebec.

Any modernization of the language act should take into consideration Quebec’s specific situation as the heart of the French language in North America, the document says, and Ottawa should thus think more of “equity than equality” in its future orientations.

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Langues officielles: discordances apparentes entre Joly et LeBel

Bien que Mélanie Joly ait accueilli poliment les demandes du gouvernement du Québec, la ministre fédérale et son homologue Sonia LeBel ne parlent visiblement pas le même langage à l’approche d’une importante réforme de la Loi sur les langues officielles. Read more (In French only)

Canada Must Not Abandon its Leadership on Official Languages

Montreal, February 5, 2021 – The Government of Canada must not retreat from its legal and moral obligation to Canada’s linguistic duality, and support for our French and English linguistic minority communities.

In a letter to Federal Official Languages Minister Mélanie Joly, Quebec’s Minister Responsible for Canadian Relations and the Canadian Francophonie, Sonia LeBel, states that the sole official minority language across Canada is French. Minister LeBel was providing Quebec’s perspective on the modernization of the federal Official Languages Act.

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Bell Media makes major cuts at CJAD

Bell Media, despite a strong financial performance and recently having received $122 million in pandemic-related labour subsidies, exacted what some are calling a jobs “bloodbath” at radio station CJAD.

Without notice, Bell Media decimated the CJAD newsroom. Shuyee Lee, who has been with the station since 1993, confirmed her departure on Twitter and added that she had been in the midst of preparing a major news story when she suddenly received the word. Read more (en anglais seulement)

Le « malaise français » dans la fonction publique fédérale

Au Canada, il y aura toujours une distinction historique entre les francophones et les anglophones, mais cette diversité culturelle et linguistique devrait conduire à une société fondée sur l’équité et l’inclusion. Pour ce faire, les compétences dans les deux langues officielles sont importantes.

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Opinion: As an English-speaking Quebecer, I feel ‘in between’

We exist in two spaces at the same time, yet somehow in neither of them completely, like standing in the doorway between two rooms.

Throughout my life, I have sometimes felt that I do not fully belong. For instance, my dad is from Dorval, and his parents were active participants in West Island life. My mom’s parents were raised on farms in the hills northwest of Thetford Mines. Having been raised with roots in both communities, I feel at times that belonging to one excludes me from fully being a part of the other.

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Editorial: How to assure our community’s vitality

As language tensions heat up, it will be important not to lose sight of our community’s strategic interests.

Raymond Théberge, Canada’s commissioner of official languages, has aptly described English-speaking Quebecers as “a young minority.” By that, he is not referring to the community’s history, which is a long one, but to its lack of what he called “social infrastructure capacity” and mature organizations devoted to advancing the community’s interests and assuring its future, relative to what is seen in francophone minority communities in the rest of Canada.

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My Quebec: Black, anglophone and feeling doubly unwelcome

Quebec is my home, a sentiment expressed with profound pride but sadly, my language and my skin colour have made me feel like an interloper.

Quebec is my home, a sentiment expressed with profound pride but sadly, both my language and my skin colour have made me feel like an interloper, fiercely battling feelings of contradiction. We are repeatedly told that diversity is welcomed, but for me, the reality has not reflected the rhetoric.

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