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Results: 1 - 15 of 2413
View David Lametti Profile
Lib. (QC)
First of all, we have done this in practice. We have enshrined a practice that puts such a high premium on functional bilingualism that it practically is a bar in being selected. We haven't done that formally.
I'm not sure it's a good idea, formally, because there may be other needs of the court at some point—for example, to appoint an indigenous person—where we may have to soften that requirement down the road. I think we're at a nice compromise right now, where, in effect, there is a requirement of functional bilingualism through the process without having to worry about either the constitutionality of such a provision or amending an act formally.
View David Lametti Profile
Lib. (QC)
I would just like to support what Ms. Campbell just said. The quality of Judge Kasirer's French is exceptional. This is a very important aspect of the process. I think the linguistic criterion has clearly been met.
View David Lametti Profile
Lib. (QC)
View Pierre Breton Profile
Lib. (QC)
View Pierre Breton Profile
2019-06-04 17:14
I have a question that is not related to the Canada Council for the Arts.
As you are in a minority situation, I assume that you are entitled to subsidies through funding initiatives supporting official languages. Are you involved with those programs?
View Pierre Breton Profile
Lib. (QC)
View Pierre Breton Profile
2019-06-04 17:15
So you are making requests for funding under initiatives supporting official languages, including for your translations, right?
View Alupa Clarke Profile
CPC (QC)
We are going to start meeting 147, which is being televised today.
We have the honour of having Raymond Théberge, the Commissioner of Official Languages, with us today.
Pursuant to Standing Order 108(3)(f), we are studying the Annual Report of the Commissioner of Official Languages 2018-19, referred to the committee on May 9, 2019.
To give some context to today's meeting for everyone watching, I would like to point out that the act provides for the presentation of an annual report by the Commissioner of Official Languages. This has been the case since 1969, if I'm not mistaken. The committee's conventions and traditions provide that we shall promptly receive the Commissioner each time so that he can submit his report directly.
Mr. Commissioner, you will have 10 minutes, as is customary, to make your opening remarks. Then, according to the committee's procedure, we will have a one-hour roundtable discussion.
Thank you to you and your team for being here today, including Ms. Giguère, Assistant Commissioner, and Ms. Saikaley.
Go ahead, Mr. Commissioner. We are listening.
View Sylvie Boucher Profile
CPC (QC)
Good morning, Mr. Théberge.
I am always very happy to have you appear before the Standing Committee on Official Languages and to see that you greatly appreciate the work we do here. It's good to see that a committee can be non-partisan most of the time.
In your remarks, you said, “The existing division of official languages responsibilities within the government is confusing and inefficient. That is why I want to see an effective governance structure build into the modernized act…”.
Could you elaborate on your two ideas: where is this confusing and what would you like to see in terms of effective governance?
View Sylvie Boucher Profile
CPC (QC)
It is often said that it's a matter of political will. There is indeed a political aspect. We are politicians, and our mentality is different. That being said, do you think that the machine itself is adapting to the politicians' desire to modernize official languages? Is the machine ready to make concessions?
Often we play the political game, and sometimes we tease each other. However, we know very well that the machine is behind us. We will move on, but the machine will remain.
Has the government machinery adapted to official languages?
View Emmanuella Lambropoulos Profile
Lib. (QC)
Thank you very much for being here with us once again. We really appreciate your presence here.
Obviously, in Quebec we're dealing with a bit of a weird situation at the moment where school boards are potentially being threatened. We know that this can pose a huge risk for the minority community who should have access to education in their minority language.
In your third recommendation, you speak a little bit to this. You say that the Minister of Official Languages should consider adding language clauses that include transparency mechanisms to enable the federal government to measure compliance by the provinces and territories.
Can you go into more detail and give us examples of what you mean?
View Emmanuella Lambropoulos Profile
Lib. (QC)
Do you have any other recommendations with regard to education that could help us protect the minority language, specifically in Quebec?
View Emmanuella Lambropoulos Profile
Lib. (QC)
Thank you very much.
You also mentioned that the complaints have increased in general to 1,087 from almost 200 fewer last year. I'd like to know how your recommendations would decrease this number.
View Emmanuella Lambropoulos Profile
Lib. (QC)
Those were the questions that I had prepared for you, but maybe you would like to give us a little more detail about your fourth recommendation as well.
View François Choquette Profile
NDP (QC)
Thank you, Mr. Chair.
I'd like to thank the three witnesses from the Office of the Commissioner of Official Languages for being here today.
Mr. Théberge, you talked about your three objectives or wishes for the coming years, namely, stopping the erosion of language rights, modernizing the act, and providing strong and clear leadership. I think this is extremely important. I have just met with representatives of the Fédération de la jeunesse canadienne-française, who somewhat criticized the fact that Canada's youth policy doesn't address official languages, when it should be part of our Canadian identity in every respect.
Recently—I think it was yesterday or the day before—Mr. Bigeau of RDÉE Canada, the Réseau de développement économique et d'employabilité for francophone minority communities, deplored the fact that the Canadian tourism strategy does not include a francophone component. According to him, “If the situation isn't corrected, francophone tourism will be neglected for five years in a rapidly changing sector. We can't afford to walk, when everyone else is running.”
In key or strategic sectors where we must promote both official languages, it therefore seems that we are forgetting our Canadian identity, one of the principles of which is bilingualism, the existence of our two official languages. It seems that we forget it and, when we point out this omission, we're told that bilingualism is implicit, that it goes without saying and that it isn't necessary to mention it.
What do you think about these omissions or this way of thinking and saying that bilingualism is obvious and doesn't need to be included in the youth policy or the tourism strategy, for example?
View François Choquette Profile
NDP (QC)
On the matter of leadership, a recent article published on the ONFR+ digital platform talks about these famous bad translations. As you know, the Government of Canada requires all products to be labelled in both official languages. The article gave some examples, including the expression “chinese cake”, which was translated as gâteau au Chinois, and “homemade bread”, which was rendered as pain aux maison. Although there is a legal obligation to label items in both official languages, it isn't taken seriously, far from it.
You mentioned that there had been an increase in the number of complaints. We always wonder why: is it because there are more violations of the act or because people are more aware of their rights?
Do you have the authority to act in relation to labelling in both official languages, or is this a file you follow from afar? There is a lot of discussion about translation within the Government of Canada itself, an issue that we have already discussed at other meetings of the committee. What role can you play in labelling?
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