Nurse Protest Doubles Outside Cornwall Ontario Community Hospital over Bilingual Requirement – VIDEO February 22, 2012

CFN – And then there were two.  The protest outside of the Cornwall Community Hospital doubled in one day as retired nurse Mary Bray joined part time nurse Christopher Cameron in protesting the hospital’s Bilingual hiring practices that some are saying have stopped job advancement and promotion to full time status.


Both nurses suggested that there is a very real fear factor with Hospital staff and looking at some of the area employment culture it’s hard to argue.  We’ve spoken with nurses at the hospital and the Cornwall run Glen Stor Dun Lodge who have shared fear of retribution if they speak out.

One offered that the Union can’t even help because violating a non-disclosure agreement could result in action against staff and the union.

It muzzles dissent and it muzzles whistle blowing, and sadly allows many politicians off the hook.


Tuesday at the United Counties meeting South Stormont mayor Bryan McGillis didn’t find support to with hold funding to the hospital until the policy has been reviewed and issues answered for.

Our efforts to gain a copy of the actual French Language test given to hospital employees has also not met with success yet.   Many feel this test is overly strenuous in its rigors to the point that many suggest people with French as their mother tongue might not pass.

In the meanwhile it should be interesting if the protest grows outside of the Cornwall Community Hospital.   Oddly silent has been Mayor Bob Kilger of Cornwall and  our fair city’s councilors.


In the meanwhile it was interesting to hear Mr. Cameron suggest that the public should be demanding that our MPP Jim McDonell should be petitioning Queen’s Park for assistance.  Mr. McDonell not only did not answer our query on this subject he refuses to speak to CFN via phone or email.

What do you think dear viewers of CFN?  Should the Hospital revisit their policy and at the very least go “Bilingualism an asset” instead of a requirement?

You can post your comments below.

Cornwall Lighting


  1. Am I reading this right?
    The protester count doubled when a second protester showed up?
    That is funny.

  2. What I find funny is that my tax dollars support this hospital- which I do not use- neither does my family- and I could not get a job here. Sad funny though.

  3. Mayor McGillis is 100% correct when he says that the jobs are being handed out on the basis of language first and qualifications as a far second. It is all about the money – the funding – how much extra funding does the hospital actually receive annually for the Bilingual Classification which the administration and board actively sought for several years? Having that information would clarify why they so adamantly adhere to an otherwise abhorrently unfair hiring practice.Thank you Dr. Tombler, Mr. Mayor, and CFN for bringing this topic forward and keep up the good fight!

  4. One protesting out of over a thousand emloyees……..less then 0.01% protesting! The truth is the people who agree with the hospital are not going to do anything because they know the right thing to do is protest the provincial government and not the hospital itself!

    Mayor Eric Duncan is bang on and McGillis is mad because now, without support, he looks like and he has made a decision that does not represent any sound principles.

    Let’s get something straight…..

    ONE: Advocating to the public to stop funding the Hospital is wrong …PERIOD! Even Dr. Tombler has publicly retracted this part of his letter because he knows it was wrong!

    TWO: Lobbying the provincial government to change their policies would be more effective in changing the policy in question and be less detrimental to the Hospital’s patients and staff!

    Also, publicly announcing a personal “Axe to grind” was not very well thought out. Mr.McGillis needs the counties to support him so that he and South Stormont do not appear wrong!

    At first, I was disapointed that Cornwall City Council has not responded to the most popular topic of the year but after listening to South Stormont make a lot assumptions and look foolish; I would agree that staying out of a provincial and issue is probably the right move.

    However, I would have liked to have seen someone atleast support the hospital’s fundraising initiative!

    Thank You,
    Mike Bedard

  5. Author

    Mike you can’t always believe every word you read in the media 🙂 From what I’ve heard and read it sounds like the Counties didn’t have the testicular fortitude to support South Stormont.

    Obviously the only thing the hospital has listened to so far was the threat of funding cuts.

    I think some of those mayors serving the counties are going to hear from some of their constituents.

    As for the protest, from what I’ve heard hospital staff are petrified of retribution.

    What does that say about what’s going on? That also being said it’s going to take some of the current and former nurses to leave the shadows and speak out publicly to expedite any change.

    And I am still hoping to get a copy of the bilingualism test for the public to see.

    Like the saying goes “Don’t shoot the messenger” and while you may not agree with Mayor McGills and South Stormont isn’t it refreshing to see a city administration actually trying to stand up for an issue that obviously is important to its citizens compared to others that hide in silence hoping the topic fades away?

  6. insted of them protesting on the street they should open a book and try learning french..

  7. Blingulism as an asset, yes. However, how do we ensure fairness in the hiring process from application through resume screening through filling the position?
    Many would agree I imagine, if there was a way to prove actual client need percentages, and hire a similar percentage of front line staff, that would be mostly acceptable. Allowing people to work and be managed in the language of THEIR choice, instead of being there for the client is not helping a majority to find work either.

    I doubt Mr Tomblin thought it wrong to suggest withholding donations, he is just under pressure from the hand that feeds him.

    South Stormont are doing the right thing, money gets attention, and this subject requires attention.

    Taxpayers give money to government to provide core and other services for all. Some of that money is being given to organizations to promote French over English in this province at least. It needs to be checked real soon. Have you heard cutbacks and bilingulism in the same sentence from anyone?

    With the snow expected, many seniors may not be able to organize a protest this weekend, but this situation calls for one to get to the heart of the matter. No pun intended.

  8. Peter, you haven’t really been following this issue at all have you. Your kind of statement is usually what would come out of the small minded and petty bilingual elite minority. Not all people are capable of learning a second language and it would seem that many of the bilingual applicants for the full time nursing jobs are not considered “French enough”. Now if someone who grew up speaking french is not french enough how can an anglophone ever possibly learn enough French to be acceptable.

  9. This is THE biggest scam, the biggest fraud and lie ever forced upon the Canadian public. People have no idea what this man Trudeau did to this country.

    “Quebec can make French the only official language in spite of the Constitution”. Pierre Trudeau, .

    “There is no way two ethnic groups in one country can be made equal before the law….and to say it is possible is to sow the seeds of destruction”. Pierre Trudeau,

    .” ….Given these facts, should French-speaking people concentrate their efforts on Quebec. or take the whole of Canada as their base? In my opinion, they should do both; and for the purpose they could find no better instrument than federalism”, Pierre Trudeau,.

    “I cannot swear it but I think we were thinking to ourselves,… we are a small group, Trudeau, Pelletier, Marchand, Lalonde, Chrétien, myself and a few people in the civil service, say 50 all told…we were bringing off a revolution. We held the key posts. We were making the civil service bilingual (French), kicking and screaming all the time”. Jean-Luc Pepin, Minister of Industry, 1970.

    50 years of spin, lies…thats what we have got. They are changing the names of towns, streets, counties, bodies of water, riding names…and I’m not taking about kebec any longer. It’s now going on all over the country; it’s a mess in Ottawa where they name things after anti-English language bigots and racists all the time. They are slowly wiping out our English, Scottish, Irish, United empire loyalists history. Just like they’ve been doing in Quebec for the last 5 decades (bills 22, 178, 101…)…This is one of the main reasons we are not teaching any history from 1760 to 1982 in our schools any longer. These racist people control government, the curriculum, our money…we get a daily dose of spin, lies and propaganda.

    Wake up… They run everything in Ottawa, they funnel the money where they want, spin, lies, propaganda, revisionist BS … Proof – In that there is constant pressure to rewrite our history – to pacify the cranky Province of Quebec and the “french “outside Quebec – the reason we lost the Red Ensign in the first place – we must do what we can to protect and preserve our history. A history that is under constant attack. Very few Canadians are aware that we now have portraits in our parliament of French Kings – who had nothing to do with the building of Canada- the statue of General James Wolfe no longer overlooks the Plains of Abraham, the only statue in Quebec City is of the losing General, Montcalm. There are statues of three French generals but no statues of the victorious generals at the Valiant’s memorial in Ottawa. That’s right, no General Wolfe, no General Amherst, No Gen Murray… This historical revisionism is going on right under the noses of the Governments we elect – and they remain silent!

    The simple facts are as more francophone’s get hired for all government positions less and less English speakers are working for their own governments across the country. Don’t believe me; Go check the stats for yourself. Francophone’s are over-represented in all levels of government including hospitals, law, policing…etc. No fairness, no representation by population. They call it bilingualism, yet the term is never defined on purpose and believe me it doesn’t mean fluency in 2 languages in Canada, at least to the French it doesn’t. No political party will speak for the English speaking majority in this province and country. Practical bilingualism, where numbers warrant… is never defined on purpose. In Ontario, NB it now means segregation. The French (they are actually metis, a mixed race, not french) are demanding French only facilities all over the province, not bilingual, French only. $ Bilingualism is really nothing more then a hiring quota for francophone’s and that is a fact…just ask yourself, why are francophone’s over-represented in all government jobs and how come more and more positions are being designated bilingual all the time? And just as important, how come they are NOT fluently bilingual? Some can barely speak English!

    See whats really going on here?

    So while Quebec bans the English language (bill 22, bill 178, bill 101…), wipes out its real BNA, UEL history, while ethnic language cleansing is going on in Quebec, the rest of the country is forced to fund whatever the French (metis) demand. This is going on in every province. Go check.

    “First Quebec, then we take over the rest of the country, one step at a time…through bilingualism…” PT, “How to take over a country through bilingualism…” SD. How ? First comes the right to communicate with gov’t in a minority language (ie French),then comes bilingualism, then comes the right to work in the language of choice(ie French), then comes a bilingual boss,(ie French) then comes a exclusively French department and on it goes until its all French. Its happening all over the country, Ontario, New Brunswick…That’s what’s really going on.

    Go learn our proud, real BNA and UEL history. These were the builders of our country since 1763. Not this phony, revisionist lie, this bilingual, multicultural, 2 founding nations, linguistic duality lie, propaganda, spin that we’ve been living with since Trudeau, and kebec forced this upon the nation. We’ve been part of the British Empire since 1763 and officially an English speaking country for over 200 years…just a fact.

    NO English speaking politician is telling you the truth, is exposing what is really going on.Not one politician, party has the decency, the honesty to expose the truth, to speak the truth,how pathetic. Poor Canada, what a mess. Please spread the word.The truth about Trudeau would be nice for a change. The man was a racist, an anti-English language, anti BNS bigot. Go read his writings; he despised our real BNA, UEL history.

    Until the charter and all the bs (bilingual, multicultural, phony rights…crap) connected to it gets repealed, we will continue to self destruct as we have for the last 5 decades.

  10. Mr. Bedard , who is obviously bilingual and probably mother-tongue French, ( in reality a prerequisite for being considered bilingual in this area) has probably never had the opportunity to feel first hand anti-language hiring practices and discrimination, unless of course he has dealt it as an employer himself. He is a business owner who has stated that he has seen firsthand in his very involved hiring processes (how many interviews and panel?) that English applicants lie about their abilities to speak French to get one of his coveted employment opportunities. How many do you employ now Mr. Bedard – six is it – including you and your wife? I am not trying to insult Mr. Bedard I’m just making just making a point; I owned a small business as well and believe that small business deserves far more attention than those big corporations as a means to get people back to work. Small business owners are the true backbone of our nation.
    That being said, I see a man who is posturing for political aspirations and does not quite understand what is happening inside the hospital. Many employees in the hospital are upset; especially those in part time positions that have been waiting for a long anticipated full time position to become available, only to be denied the opportunity because the position has been deemed bilingual essential by Human Resources and the administration. In some cases the preferred technically bilingual person, who may have far less experience or qualifications than a unilingual candidate, is given a position in which little to no interaction with the outside public even occurs. Add to this the fact that the working language of the hospital and all areas within are English the choice of the bilingual candidate becomes merely statistically based to achieve funding. It becomes all about money and less about quality.
    Many hospital employees are afraid to join the protest or make their true feelings known to the press or other media as they have been warned by administration that job actions would take place if they do. Did you know that due to privacy laws employees cannot ask known acquaintances that they might happen to see within the hospital, either as a visitor or as a patient, how they are feeling unless they are directly involved in that person’s treatment such as a nurse or caregiver.? For instance a phlebotomist (blood collector for the lab) is not allowed to ask how a patient is feeling when they arrive to draw blood samples. Heck, technically employees can’t even ask each other how they are feeling So much for your “only one protestor out of a thousand “observation Mr. Bedard. Having said that, excuse me for not using my name as my source of information could be in trouble if I were to publically go on record.

  11. One other thing worth mentioning is that I think other than in a few rare cases which mostly involved misunderstandings or French language zealots (those that refuse to accept English service even if fluently bilingual, happens everywhere, not just hospitals) , one would be hard pressed to find many if any cases where French language service was refused to a patient even before the hospital board sought the Official Bilingual Status. Now that they have their status and the extra funding to go with it they have language problems, labour issues, public relations issues, and a divided community as well. Does that about sum it up?

  12. Re: Left-or-Right

    I am, and admin, can vouch for me not a francophone! My father is hence my last name! You again are only proving my point that you are assuming way too much! My mother’s family is from England and my two brothers only speak english; hence my support for the change! I personally put a lot of extra effort into learning the language and was fortunate enough to have a family member (father) help me! I advocate progression and much of this debate is regressive!

    I have publicly supported the fact that FRENCH should be an asset and not a must. THIS IS THE 6 TIME I HAVE HAD TO SAY THIS! I actually plan to stop by and see the petition myself. If the petition is to have the Provincial Government change their funding practice policy than I am all for supporting it!

    However, f it promotes or even hints that people should stop donating to the hospital or in any way targets the staff or administration of the Hospital then I will not support such an initiative!

    As someone who’s Mother-in-law is a director at the hospital and who has several relatives and friends working for the Cornwall Community Hospital, I would like to say that I think I may know more than you think!

    You have placed an image of me that is not true and misleading! I merely mentioned that many people claim to speak french but really don’t because it is an example of how people that claim to be bilingual many of the times aren’t and the only way to find out is to test them!

    I interviewed a girl yesterday who stated she took french in high school and speaks french! I asked her “Ci ma pere t’appelle pour moi, quesque tu vas te dire?” She responded by saying that was a bit above her french level but could still get by! All I asked was (for those that do not understand was) “If my father calls for me what will you say?”

    For your information I hired her despite your perception of me! Because I am a fair employer I looked at her education and work experience first and her language skills second!

    And still as a new business striving to provide the highest level of services to our community I still try to ensure atleast one person is on staff to speak french in case a francophone client visits our store! There isn’t always someone who speaks french and yes I have lost sales because of this! The staff were perfectly capable and arguably better trained and educated then the bilingual staff but could not communicate with the client and they left!

    NOW WHAT IF THAT SALE WAS A LIFE! Loss of life is not exceptable and every precaution should take place to prevent this including ensuring bilingual staff are ALWAYS available!

    The hospital must ensure they have bilingual employees and how to administor that would be the only topic worth debating!

    Thank You,
    Mike Bedard

  13. Left to right hit it on the nail. the hospital WAS NOT forced they chose remember Danny Tombler and one other voted against but once they got there cash they are now forced to follow the rules they accepted when thta first cheque arrived. So why not give back all that funding and strike a fair hiring policy that allows for paying tax payers who need an income to pay South Stormont property taxes a chance at a job or do we give that job to someone that conmuutes here and pays taxes outside the area! This is not a french english issue at all its about hiring practices and reasonable numbers and reasonable response times! maybe time for a french hospital if number warrant and once you made your choice thats it. waiting times like every where esle ! remember the option Montfort in Orleans closer to us than someone in Kanata who is french in rush hour !

  14. A minority doesn’t exact change! Several of you speak as is if you are a genius but you can’t even speak french in a bilingual community! You are the lower tier of society and will always drive us backwards because you are too simple to understand common logic.

    Mike you are professional but forget these people they are baiting you and you will learn to ignore them with a little more experience.

  15. @ Mike Bedard, I apologize for any misinformation I may have caused here about you, but you do tend to come off a bit high and mighty and a lot anti-English even though you may not be. For the record my ties to the hospital span over 50 years with many immediate family members working there in many capacities and many positions including management over the years. I too am of recent British ancestry on one side and of a French Canadian ancestry spanning over 400 years on the other.
    I personally know of part time employees who have been denied full time positions, some with over 10 years experience efficiently dealing directly with the public in both languages. One particular part time employee could not pass the Advanced French designation receiving only Intermediate because a crucial part of the test required listening to and interpreting a grossly distorted tape recording which even mother tongue French employees had a hard time understanding. In fact I know of a mother tongue French employee, angry with the results of their test which was only Advanced French, because of that same garbled tape. That person spent their own money to re-test in Ottawa where a clean crisp CD was used. They easily obtained their Superior French designation from their effort. In the case of the Intermediate level part time worker, they requested a re-test which was denied and consequently the more experienced and deserving worker of 10 years was also not interviewed and the job went to less experienced French speaking worker of barely a year . Mike, please with reason and logic explain how this practice is fair and not discriminatory? The hospital has always had bilingual employees of that there is no debate; the debate is why did the board sell their soul for funding and creating a French over experience as an asset discriminating environment?
    Ask your family members and friends and Mother-in-law director about the Privacy policies and find out what could actually happen to some of those 1000 who might want to join the protest. You might want to dig into how this situation came about, how long the board sought the Bilingual Status and how much money the designation nets the hospital each year. It is all about money and much less about language…believe me.

    I am very sorry to hear that you have lost sales due to language issues and as I have stated before there are a few French language zealots in this city that although fully bilingual refuse to acknowledge or deal with unlingual English as a matter of some misguided bigoted principle. Having dealt with the public directly for over 30 years in Cornwall myself I saw this type of person on occasion and have called them out on their ignorance – sale or no sale. Fortunately the majority of Cornwallites either speaks English or will accept the willingness of an English person to accommodate them.

    Regarding your life and death inference, I doubt that there has ever been any life and death situation in our Cornwall Community Hospital due to the absence of someone immediately available to interpret or translate French to a patient. That thought is a little bit of a fear mongering tactic. As a matter of fact I believe the hospital has a list of employees of many other languages as well in case the need arises for their interpretation services. At any rate, although I understand it is more comforting to have a care giver that speaks your language flawlessly, I think most people would opt for a care giver with more experience. That is providing there is always someone nearby to translate if need be – and of that I am quite sure there is.

    As a final point I would like to know why there are not people readily available at all times to speak Mohawk to the citizens of Akwesasne, especially their elders who may not speak either English or French? There are so many of their residents using the CCH and if the issue was truly about language they too would be considered.

  16. Opportunistic Devil says, “Several of you speak as is if you are a genius but you can’t even speak french in a bilingual community! You are the lower tier of society and will always drive us backwards because you are too simple to understand common logic.” Phew, not just a bigot, but an insulting and ignorant bigot to boot.

  17. Just having the the bilingual sign, as shown above, will get the anti-French juices flowing.
    Sad, really.

  18. Pete Dick, seeing French on a sign does not anti French make. Very few that come onto these posts are anti anything. Most of us have grown up with, are, or have family that is of French heritage.

    People get along until government enters and puts laws into place. Russell Township for example should not be FORCING a business to put up certain signs, the business should market to their customer base.

    Our tax dollars should not be used to bribe another leg of government to increase French services, this takes money from services for the actual user of those services. How many MRI’s could the federal bilingual bonus provide for hospitals?

    Having a different building (cleaning, electricty, administration) for a French clinic takes money away from services to pay those costs. Replace French with black or Jewish and that would be racist segregation. We have gone well beyond providing service in French and English as it was sold to us!

    The governments have more money than is needed now, they are not using it in a smart way and expanding French beyond what is needed, is expensive and as we see, career ending.

  19. Opportunistic Devil, a minority certainly can and do affect change. Microsoft, Facebook, Cornwall Free News started with an idea. The road near the OLG Slots in Ottawa was shut down to non local traffic because one person complained of a few extra cars. (It is open now) People ask for stop signs, or changes all the time that affect very few.

    Each of us have more power than we give ourselves credit for, however the old saying is true. One snowflake alone will not collapse your roof.

  20. Re: Left to Right

    As per your question ” Mike, please with reason and logic explain how this practice is fair and not discriminatory?” I don’t meant to sound rude but I have started counting now, so I will continue by saying: I have publicly supported the fact that FRENCH should be an asset and not a must. THIS IS THE 7 TIME I HAVE HAD TO SAY THIS! I support the recommendation to change the wording. Also, did you know that the Fire Department nor do many other services “REQUIRE” that their staff be bilingual. However, when asked about this topic the response was “We never needed to impliment this policy because we always have someone who is bilingual on staff!”

    Thank you for the backhanded apology…lol….just a little humour! Please just don’t assume too much as it can become contagious. I personally would like to improve and I am a bit younger and would value your input! Can you please tell me what came off “precisely” as high and mighty to you. I do not wish to come across as anything other than passionate! Please provide me with a phrase from my comments that seemed High and Mighty.

    Thank You,
    Mike Bedard

  21. People are waiting for health care if the employee can not work to provide care due to language. ENOUGHT my own mother can not get a doctor health care is rationed due to money… language why do we wait

  22. Mike Bedard is correct to say that one or two protestors are not sufficient. A rally is being organized and I hope that enough people show up on March 3rd at 1:00 pm at the CCH to make a point. Yes, there are people who are afraid of retribution from the hospital if they protest publicly but there are lots of people who believe that a principle is at stake. If you believe in the principle that it is wrong to shut the majority out of advancement and job opportunities because they don’t speak a minority language, come out and support this rally. Contact Kim at if you can come and help swell the numbers. We thank the Cornwall Free News for this ability to expose a great injustice to the English-speaking majority. Kim

  23. I am extremely interested to see the turn out as I am sure many are but why are you protesting outside of the hospital and not Jim McDonell’s Office?

    I have also received information that several protesters had to escorted off the property for stopping vehicles at the entrance way. Please maintain a level of professional that examplifies your cause. No one wants to be harrassed nor do they wish to be rude to your efforts. Please do not impeded traffic because it may cause a negative outcome.

    Good Luck with your efforts and I hope some change is on the way to rectifying this problem! A little advice to the protesters: “All eyes are on you and if you want to push the issue forward please get yourselves both a good public speaker fto address the media and numbers! Without a large enough gathering your petition will lose some importance and your cause will lose traction!”

    You will have media available now don’t lose sight of the REAL purpose! Do not offend anyone but stick to the hard facts and directly spell out the change you would like to see! Nobody will listen to complaining without a solution and thats all you will be seen as is complaining unless you clearly describe you “desired outcome”!

    Thank You,
    Mike Bedard

  24. @ Mike Bedard, I wouldn’t say you are high and mighty my definition of you is arrogant. You seemed to think you know what was best for the protesters so I wonder why you didn’t offer to perhaps be their “speaker?” As for protesting in front of the hospital, that is where the unfair hiring practices are, what better place? Lastly I think we heard differently about the escorting off the property. I HEARD that a upper management called police and laid on his horn when a visitor leaving the hospital asked to sign the petition. Now how long did that take? I heard 30 seconds. By the way DID YOU EVER GO SIGN THE PETITION as you have claimed SEVEN TIMES that you support the issue of FRENCH as an asset not a requirement!!

  25. There was a plain clothes Police Officer parked in a black car with tinted windows on the west side of the entrance and a marked car at Happy Rock (Gladstone Public). Two Commisionairs came out of the hospital after 1PM and tried to direct traffic until another marked Police car arrived and took over those duties. Because we were on both sides of the entrance/exit, it was difficult for drivers to see, and I apoligize, safety for all is important. Perhaps we should stay a few feet away from either side next time, but at least we did not say what the Ottawa transit boss said during the last strike. ” we are inconviencing a few people, what is wrong with that?”
    There was a lot of horn sounding and most were in support, even a fire truck made some noise.

  26. What is funny is James Wolfe going on and on with vague misinterpreted historical facts about Quebec and Canada. First of all, law 101 in Quebec was put in place to protect the French speaking majority from English unilingualism. You can still go to school in English in Quebec if you were born there or in Canada and if your parents went to English. We call that historical rights. In Quebec (believe it or not) we do support and keep alive our English speaking minority because we realize diversity is important and recognize the role Anglos played in Quebec. You want proof? there cities like the one I live in where not even 1 % of the population speaks English and yet you can get services in Engish in stores and at city hall. There are a total of 18 hospitals in Quebec designated bilingual that are constrained to offer bilingual services.

    Montreal and Quebec in general are recognized all over the world as very a very vibrant place, including reviews from the New York Times and many prestigous European magazines. Why? Because all over Quebec now you can live in two languages and be surrounded by many cultures and people are just generally more open minded. Yes there is still racism but Ontario and the rest of English Canada pales in comparison when it comes dynamism and openness. It’s not for nothing that Sugar Sammy, a great comedian famous in Hollywood, decided to do a show in Frenglish throughout the province, and it’s a franc succès! Ah!!.. only in Quebec.

    On another note, very funny how our relations with the States have become so much more fruitfull and positive. Burlington, Vermont recently decided to offer French classes to its’ citizens and put up bilingual signs at their airport and on certain businesses because they realized how important it was to their economy to attract a potention 8 million people to their region. And I think Cornwall could and should definitely learn a few lessons from Vermonters. Plus 50% or more of your population is either French or of French origine. I also noticed that the age of the population is getting excessively old and everyone seems to have left. Hmmm, could that be because nobody wants to live in a closed minded, cultureless city that neglects its’ own past. Many francophones left because of the daily ignorance and sometimes blatant racism they had to endure and good riddance to them. But unfortunately your sad little city will continue to pereclit into oblivion as people there tend to get dumber and dumber, and the economy tends to become very manual-based, whenever it’s not unexistent.

    Last but not least, very very funny how Mr McGillis is shooting his community in the foot, because as the news of such hostile anti-French measures get to be known in the Quebec media, his tourist attractive region where tonnes of Quebecers flock to for camping will begin to crumble. No Quebecer will go camping or do other tourist activities in a region that is francophobic, not just anti-French. I mean I regularly see latino and vietnamese families who speak French even amungst each other, who don’t speak alot of English and who are also proud of being Quebecer (judging by the quebec flags they put up along with their native country’s flag). South Stormont depends on francophones for the economy, so they should wake up and smell the coffee, or for many they will be waking up to smell the unemployment cheque.

    Good luck guys!!!

  27. Re: R.B. – I support change but honestly I don’t think this group is well organized or on the same page. The leaders are “in my opinion” taking the wrong routes and although I believe there is a need for change I will never support anyhting that may hinder our healthcare!

  28. What we need to do is as Luc suggests. Move the goal posts. You (Supreme Court of Canada) don’t like Bill 101, trade it for Bill 178 and when the 5 year review kicks in under the Constitution Act, impliment Bill 86. Bill 22 is in there somewhere as well.

    Ontario has moved the goal posts by expanding the definition of Francophone, expanding government services beyond what is warranted and spending 600 plus million a year. Some of that money is being removed from healthcare to expand the ideaolgy. With the internet, some media and South Stormont helping to get the word out, the fog is lifting from the game field allowing more to see the scoreboard.

  29. So Luc, what does you diatribe against anglophones have to do with fair hiring practices at the Cornwall Community Hospital?

  30. Hey Reg, slightly over 30% of posts up for hirging were designated bilingual, which corresponds to the percentage of francophones in the region. And they weren’t even able to fill half of those posts. So I agree with you, it’s still not fair and more effort should be put into filling that 30% requirement of bilingual staff. REPRESENTATION is part of something called DEMOCRACY. Not hard to figure out. Unless of course you’re against democracy.

    If you’re not happy with having to learn French, you can move just down the road to Kingston. I don’t think they speak too much French over there, you should be safe.

    No but seriously. millions of people in Africa learn French everyday with very limited means, sometimes just a blackboard. So it’s just a question of recognizing that you live under the Maple Leaf and not the Star Spangled Banner. You can start by learning your original national anthem:

    O’ Canada
    Terre de nos ailleux
    Ton front est saint
    De fleurons glorieux
    Car ton bras sait porter l’épée
    Il sait porter la croix
    Ton histoire est une épopée
    Des plus brillants exploits
    Et ta valeur
    De foi trempée
    Nos foyers et NOS DROIT (and living in French and English is a constitutional RIGHT)


  31. The right to move and gaining a liveliehood in any province is in the Charter of Rights and Freedoms but”living in French and English is a constitutional RIGHT” can not be found, unless you mean the Constitution of 1982. It does list “English and French are the official languages of Canada and have equality of status and equal rights and privileges as to their use in all institutions of the Parliament and government of Canada.” How does that support your comment?

    If everyone has to start by learning the original song before parts of it became the national anthem, we should look at revisiting other areas since 1759 as well.

  32. Stop unfair hiring policies!

    I have worked with this community my whole life and I’m a part of the health care community. I have come across a variety of people from all walks of life. Some french, English speaking with cognitive impairments, hearing impaired individuals, and individuals born outside of Canada from all back grounds who don’t speak a word of English. I as a health care provider need to communicate with them the best I can, and I have to say I do very well.

    I have spent many hours with individuals who speak Polish, French, German. Does that mean I have to learn all these languages?

    THIS IS CANADA! We are full of culture and I for one an proud of that! Why are we discriminating against English speaking individuals? Most of Canada is made up of them!

    I speak English, I can have a conversation in French, I know 1 to 10 in Finish, can speak a few words in German, Spanish and Polish. I also know some sign language.

    Yet I know I wouldn’t pass that French exam, and have little opportunity at the Cornwall Hospital. This is discrimination in the 21st Century. It makes me sad that Canadians are fighting over this issue, both in Ontario and Quebec

    We are all brothers and sisters and we need to accommodate one another. We need to stop unfair hiring policies in Ontario and Quebec. If we fail to do this we will always have discrimination between French and English.

    Lets not go back to the stone age. Two thumbs up Dr. Tombler, and all those who support equality!

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