Ruth Wood of Barrie Ontario on Official Bilingualism in Ontario – August 22, 2012

Ruth Wood of Barrie Ontario on Official Bilingualism in Ontario – August 22, 2012

Official Bilingualism could be compared to a ‘smoke ring’.  This ring in Ontario, centered around Ontario’s French Language Services Act, included 22 designated areas of the province, and has gradually spread outward taking in more and more areas. Recently it was revealed that there are now 25 designated areas, which encompasses almost all of our province. This ‘smoke ring’ was puffed out by Premier David Peterson’s Ontario Liberal government in 1986, with no mandate from the people, and, due to miniscule media coverage, was unbeknown to most residents of Ontario, until it affected them personally. 

This situation is presently being felt in Cornwall, Ontario, where the smoke ring is closing in on English-speaking nurses at the local Cornwall Community Hospital. They are being denied access to jobs and career advancement due to the imposition of official bilingualism!

It would appear very few, residents of Ontario are aware of the manner in which the French Language Services Act was passed, and no wonder!  Anyone in Cornwall who is not familar with the details, might like to check the Hansard Report, under the date of November 18th, 1986, the date this Bill was passed. It should be available at your local library. The sole purpose of a Hansard is so that the electorate can be informed as to what has gone on in their Legislature.

The French Language Services Act, also known as Bill 8, was passed by only 55 members of the 125-member Ontario Legislature, not even one-half of the members in attendance, which certainly cannot be considered as being “passed unanimously” by the full Legislature. The 70 members who absented themselves presumably did so to indicate their disapproval.  They would represent a huge majority of residents of Ontario who had absolutely no say in the passing of this Bill.  It was passed almost entirely in the French language for the approximately 95% English-speaking residents of Ontario, and there was no recorded vote.

Many Canadians are of the misguided understanding that we live in a democracy, which in effect means that “the right to govern is derived from the consent of the governed”.

With almost nil media coverage prior to the passing of this Bill, one has to ask,  if it was such fair and equitable legislation why were the details not made public?  A well-respected Ontario Conservative MPP is on record as referring to the fact that there was no meaningful public discussion of the French Language Service Act, and no reference to a standing committee to look at what the implications of the legislation would mean to Ontario. He went on to say that the wholesale extension of French language services in Ontario represented a HORRENDOUS waste of taxpayers’ dollars, whose passage in l986 marked one of “the blackest days” in the history of the Legislature.

Unbelievable as it may seem, only after the Bill had been passed,  and after permission had been granted to circumvent the rules, was an English translation of second and third reading provided, and this translation was hidden away under a different date!! (After much searching, it was found in the Hansard Report of November 24th, 1986).

Initial criteria for providing services “where numbers warrant” was soon neatly and unceremoniously disposed of.  

 A salute to the Cornwall public officials, including Mayor Bryan McGillis, of South Stormont, and Dr. Tombler, who have indicated their opposition to a recent ruling requiring that hospital staff at Cornwall Community Hospital be bilingual. Also to Deputy Mayor Tammy Hart of South Stormont who had the courage to post her concerns that  the French language, representing a miniscule percentage (4%)of the Ontario population, is taking a prominent position, not just on signs but in the public sector hiring policy.

Personal bilingualism may be a worthwhile personal pursuit, but ‘Official bilingualism’ is bilingualism enforced by law, with the astrnomical costs picked up by taxpayers!  

Keep in mind the statements made, on November 13th, l982, to the Acadian Association of Nova Scotia  by former Secretary of State Serge Joyal, (now a Senator)….quote “Everything we undertake, and everything we are doing to make Canada a French state is part of a venture I have shared for many years with a number of people”.  He went on to say, “The idea, the challenge, the ambition of making Canada a French country both inside and outside Quebec … is something a little beyond the ordinary imagination”. 

Does that not ring a bell as to what is presently taking place in our country?

(Comments and opinions of Editorials, Letters to the Editor, and comments from readers are purely their own and don’t necessarily reflect those of the owners of this site, their staff, or sponsors.)

Verico
Refused by the bank?  Call Dale O’Dair today
for help in finding a mortgage!

Related Post

Leave a Reply

77 Comments on "Ruth Wood of Barrie Ontario on Official Bilingualism in Ontario – August 22, 2012"

Notify of
avatar
400
Colleen McIntosh
Guest

As usual, Administer, you are absolutely and completely correct!

I fear that no logic or reality will ever suffice, especially when the French minority has a vested interest in maintaining the divisive and discriminatory policies of Official Bilingualism.

Lately, there is an air of clear desperation noted, from our French minority, as it is plainly and resoundingly obvious that the ROC is finally saying…”enough is enough”.

Personally, think we ALL know the answer to your last question.

* smiley face*

Patrick Boucher
Guest
There is nothing wrong with montreal being an anglo town but it’s just a shame. It’s a shame that the french language is decreasing every year even with la loi 101. To compare our canadian laws to fascism is ludicrous. You can function perfectly well in Québec without learning french, too bad you can’t say the same about R.O.C. But you chose to leave the province. You know darn well that you could have sent your offspring to anglo schools without any problems. You were born in the province, you had no justification to give ? Its just frustrating for… Read more »
Patrick Boucher
Guest

Name me one unilingual francophone that has succeeded and wasnt a Québec resident ??

Patrick Boucher
Guest

If the only way to save a language/culture, in this case the French language, is by destroying another(English in Quebec) then that first culture should simply perish.

– how are they being destroyed when you can achieve great success in Québec without uttering a word of french??

Patrick Boucher
Guest

Ok, name me one dépanneur that were told to shut down because of l’office de langue française.

jules
Guest
Admin I remember that so well about the FLQ crisis. If you bring up Pierre Trudeau on youtube.com you will see some things of those days. I am a boomer (an oldie) and remember about people having to stay away from mailboxes because of all the explosions. Many people including companies left Montreal and the rest of Québec and not just anglophones but francophones as well. I remember the army being stationed in Cornwall as well on McConnell Avenue in front of Lamoureux’s house who was speaker of the House of Commons and also in front of lawyer Rouleau’s house… Read more »
Wayne
Guest

If you think Ontario is bad, have a look at this webpage: http://www.lowdownonline.com/french-only-website-fails-to-register-with-anglo-user/

Not silent anymore Anglo
Guest
Not silent anymore Anglo

“… rights entrenched in the constitution to protect languages and culture”.

Mike Bedard, read again the Trudeau Constitution. The only language and culture that he protected there was French, thus legislating your tribe into a superior caste. That’s why you and our ilk are fighting tooth and nail today to preserve the undeserved advantages in employment and positions of power. You are afraid English Canada is finally realizing it had been conned.

Not silent anymore Anglo
Guest
Not silent anymore Anglo

Correction: should be read ” That’s why you and YOUR ilk…”

Colleen McIntosh
Guest

To Patrick Boucher, Le Renard, Mike Bedard and company. Have watched your posts and noticed that you repeatedly call on us, to prove us or our opinions wrong, typically.

Would suggest another tack…why don’t you do your own research, for a change. Why do you post on this site, anyway…is it to try to justify the bigotry and ignorance shown?

If, you have a rebuttal than post it…otherwise all I keep hearing is the sound of crickets!

Clearly, you are never going to accept the hard truths and realities…but really that is YOUR issue and not OURS!!!

Highlander
Guest
Patrick You said: Québec does need stricter language laws. Bill 101 is the most restrictive law ,with the fact that Canada has been chastised on numerous occasions by the United Nations as a form of language genocide. As for Daddy`s little separatist -I am not surprised by your viewpoints -My how ETHNOCENTRIC of you! Jules logic and reasoning will prevail ,I see you are balanced on your approach to this topic ,thank you for your insite. bella b said: The problem with living side by side Patrick, is that you don’t want to be equals, you want to be superior.… Read more »
Ken Kellington
Guest
Thank You Ruth. I have always complained that the Official Languages Act (1969) that started this entire OFFICIAL BILINGUALISM, WAS NEVER APPROVED BY A MAJORITY VOTE OF CANADIANS. It is shocking and unbelievable what is now happening to the MAJORITY OF ENGLISH SPEAKING CANADIANS IN AN EFFORT TO “FORCE” OFFICIAL BILINGUALISM TO WORK. If Canada is a democracy then why are our CITIZENS REQUIRED TO BE BILINGUAL IN FRENCH AND ENGLISH TO QUALIFY FOR JOBS IN THE MAJOR PORTION OF OUR COUNTRY WHERE LESS THAN FIVE PERCENT OF THE POPULATION SPEAK OR EVEN READ FRENCH? This is why I submitted… Read more »
Patrick Boucher
Guest

Explain this highlander, how is it supported by one culture at the expense of another when 7 million plus people pay taxes and ask in return for 0.008 % of the total budget.
– Are you going to blame it on the weather, the environment or rather just be honest and say bilingualism is A GOOD THING. ( my ode to martha stewart.)

Anglo
Guest

Harper should either invoke the Notwistanding Clause and repeal the OLA or tweak the OLA to make English the official language in English Canada and French the official language in the province of Quebec, at the federal level. I am sick and tired of the Bloc, PQ, FLSA Ontario, French Claw in Ottawa and franco bigots everywhere.

Burned Anglo
Guest
Has everyone forgotten the hard time politicians and the chattering classes gave Sault Ste. Marie when they brought the danger of Bill 8 to the citizens? We had half the world’s news media land at our city to berate us for our shocking behavior. Eventually they came up with a totally false assumption that we were demanding “English Only” in our city. The truth is that 20,000 citizens signed a petition to keep from having our taxes hammered by wasteful translation at City Hall. We had translaters for anyone who could not speak English already in place so what was… Read more »
Colleen McIntosh
Guest

Hello Anglo…your post is spot on the money! Wish, I could give it a hundred “thumbs” up:)

Completely believe that it is not incumbent upon the English majority to save the French language from extinction. When you have to legislate a language into usage, it is already dead and irrelevant.

Not to mention, why should we (English) pay for French language in Canada. Let the French pay their own tab and we’ll pay for ours!!!

Colleen McIntosh
Guest

Hello Burned Anglo…no, didn’t know…thanks for sharing your story, with us.

Of course, you are quite right in your summary. Check out this site, Howard Galganov and Canadians for Language Fairness.

Canadians are fighting back…join us:)

Colleen McIntosh
Guest

Hello Ken Kellington…thanks for your excellent summary and letter.

Completely concur with your suggestions. The French majority have declared Quebec, unilingually French officially. It is long past time, that the Rest of Canada (ROC) follow Quebec’s example and declare ROC unilingually English officially!!!

Please check out: Language Fairness for All, Canadians for Language Fairness and Howard Galganov.

They are fighting for OUR rights…join the fight:)

Eric
Guest

Patrick, a quick search of news last week will show those 7 million people you mention get something like 2 dollars and 62 cents for every dollar they pay into Canada. That is a great return, can I sign up for it without moving to Quebec?

Barry Renouf
Guest

Patrick, please vote for Pauline!!!

Mariah
Guest

I love Anglo’s comments ,
Harper should either invoke the Notwistanding Clause and repeal the OLA or tweak the OLA to make English the official language in English Canada and French the official language in the province of Quebec, at the federal level. I am sick and tired of the Bloc, PQ, FLSA Ontario, French Claw in Ottawa and franco bigots everywhere.

Margo
Guest
That English people can get along perfectly well in Quebec is a complete and utter lie. Only if you have the privilege to work within the English community can you have a good job and get promotions etc… studies have even proven that French Quebec employers prefer to hire those who’s mother tongue is French. When you are lucky enough to get hired, then you have to face discrimination problems and like one French Quebecer said, it’s easy to kick an English person out. I cannot work in my field. There are no such jobs within the English community and… Read more »
Margo
Guest
I forgot to say…. the French language is not considered to be a endangered language ! Not even in Canada ! It is one of the most spoken languages in the world and 29 countries have it as an official language. Look at the statistics before believing anything that you hear ! And stop it with the pity party ! In New Brunswick the last stats say that there was a huge ”increase” in French speaking people. There are also more English people so it is only in the proportions that there is a ”slight” decline. It is only normal… Read more »
Lolochuck
Guest

Spoke with Dr. Tombler yesterday. He said that your letter described the situation perfectly! Thought that you might like to get that feedback. Thanks again for putting your thoughts out there……accurate and for all to see. Keep standing up for what you believe in!!!

wpDiscuz