Anglophones told to get to back of Bus in Cornwall Ontario LFA Protests French Health Clinic – by Don Smith

CFN-Earlier today members of the local Language Fairness for All – LFA group were joined by members of the Ottawa area Canadians for Language Fairness – CLF umbrella group in front of Cornwall’s taxpayer-funded French-only medical clinic.

In late May the groups converged in Chesterville, catching James Moore, Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages, quite off-guard.  We covered that story.  That day some members carried a makeshift coffin decrying the (near) death of democracy in Canada.  Today they were sporting a cardboard bus and shouting:  “Back of the bus, English; know your place.”  The groups are drawing attention to the apparent lack of fairness in current language laws, their interpretation and heavy public funding of minority language groups outside of the province of Quebec.  Today, they were specifically pointing out the disparity in funding and access to service, whereby hospitals and clinics are being pushed to be 100% bilingual or French-only, while English-only is no longer an option.

In our video clip you’ll see and hear their demonstration as well as hear from some participants, including a few newcomers.

By Don Smith, Former CFN

Former Media Consultant at Cornwall Free News


  1. LOL (this is my homage to stella)
    Where do I begin. No one is forcing language down your throats. You moved to timmins and good for you. Seems to me your blaming language for your lack of getting ahead career wise. By the way cory, great idea quoting Che…wasnt he a terrorist and a murderer? Havent read his bio yet.

    Mme Bouchard Cameron, ( ou cory je ne le sais pas et je m’en fiche)

    The government does not dictate your career path, you do that yourself. It only puts in requirements that they think would be the best to serve canadians. If a waitress comes up to me, depending where I am, Yes i will ask my question in french first. IS that a problem ? Moi, je ne laisse pas ma culture et ma langue si facilement que toi.

    Sending your kids to french immersion is a good thing.. They will get ahead in life not just cause of language, but they will have a chance to be more open to the world we live in. Why not learn another language instead of french and english. learn a third language ..or even a fourth. Je ne me limite pas si facilement.

  2. Patrick you wrote:

    “By the way cory, great idea quoting Che…wasnt he a terrorist and a murderer? Havent read his bio yet.”

    Hey Patrick! Che Guevara is a hero to all poor people alike. A highly educated Argentinian doctor who devoted himself to helping the poor. He is a folk hero to the people of Cuba. There are several biographies out there. I wouldn’t recommend you reading them though, you would be wasting YOUR time…

    You see, much like past posts, you’ve already judged the man and his accomplishments! Tell me Patrick, how do you feel about the hundreds of child molestation accusations within the Catholic Church?

  3. WOW….Cory always takes quotes from very controversial people. A socialist (in marxist theory) is a transitional social state between the overthrow of capitalism and the realization of communism……yep..that sounds accurate. How someone can takes quotes from the likes of these types speaks volumes about their mentality……..**s** Really makes one wonder about one’s state of mind when quoting them to prove a point…..HMMM!!!

  4. Che Guavera is an Argentine marxist revolutionary…….that is someone everybody should look up to……..LMAO!!! A real role model he is…..and yet some people think he is wonderful. PATHETIC……..OMG

  5. Cory va travailler……ca vas te changer les idees. For a guy who is thinking to get politically involved, you better change your ways and your thoughts……..LMAO.

  6. Patrick you wrote:

    “Mme Bouchard Cameron, ( ou cory je ne le sais pas et je m’en fiche)

    The government does not dictate your career path, you do that yourself. It only puts in requirements that they think would be the best to serve canadians. If a waitress comes up to me, depending where I am, Yes i will ask my question in french first. IS that a problem ? Moi, je ne laisse pas ma culture et ma langue si facilement que toi.”

    If you don’t care if it is me or Cory, why do you keep bringing it up?

    And that is what we want to tell the government of the injustice that they have caused. If we sit down and do not do anything than nothing is going to change. We want fairness and equality for all. There is room for everyone to serve all Canadians. Tell me, when you call any departments, from bank to government services to help centres do you speak to someone in French or English?

    It is not a problem if you ask your question in French. I asked if you demanded to have someone serve you in French, if the person is English speaking. As you would say, je ne laisse pas ma culture et ma langue si facilement. But I also know that my culture is in my home with my family celebrating St Jean Baptise, or Reveillon at Christmas. My Culture is what I make of it in my home with food and traditions. They are around me everyday, and I do speak French at home. But in public if I have to see a specialist or a doctor I will speak the language that is easiest to speak between us. I make an effort to my English speaking Ontarians and work as a team in my health care or banking needs.

    I have never experienced this separatist effort that some French Ontarians have and I would like to apologize in advance for any bad experiences that my fellow Anglophones may have experienced. But we are not all like that!!!!

  7. Stella,

    You’d make fun of me for the colour of my skin if you could, wouldn’t you.

    Anyone who doesn’t agree with you=not worth your respect, right?

    I see through your ways! So should everyone else too!

  8. Hi Chris,

    Thank you for the professional response I enjoyed reading something non offensive.

    Let’s discuss the issues everyone! You are all fighting but unfortunately all of your arguing seems petty.

    My mother is in the health care industry and has been PSW since I can remember. SHE CAN NOT SPEAK A WORD OF FRENCH! She is amazing and if she was passed over due to inability to speak french …….I would be angered!

    However, that would be my personal feelings and I know for a fact that she would not be able to understand her patient fully and arguably enough to diagnose whether to seek further assistance just through verbal conversation.

    Your analogy of a proctologist isn’t valid because the clause doesn’t apply to doctors or various other positions such as most of the non-medical staff!

    I agree with you 100% that skills are first and should always take be considered before language but who is to say that isn’t being done? Just because you were passed over assumes someone else was hired that isn’t capable of doing the job………Is this true?

    Your group claimed it wasn’t about language but simply about fairness and not a single person believes this now! THIS IS WHAT YOU SHOULD CONCENTRATE ON CORRECTING! No one will support a group that can easily be labelled as a seperatist faction or that even hints at not making our largest minority group feel welcomed and at home in our community!

    Keep up the good fight but please be careful of the comments made! You just claimed that a specialist would be hired that is not qualified to do the job ……..which is not true! When you go to an extreme and use scare tactics that aren’t even close to the truth then you lose the respect and trust of those that spend just a few minutes to research your comments!

    Again, I think you have a valid cause but your group needs set some clear goals and highlight your successess to the public. Right now your goals are either not clear or simply unacheivable at this time and you will/have lost moment becasue of this!

    Thank You,
    Mike Bedard

  9. Hi Mike ,

    Thanks for your response .

    Yes I believe communication is key ,you may believe it to be petty but these individuals have a right to voice their concerns on both sides.

    The site allows people to speak up and be heard on a subject that’s akin to “a family’s dirty secret and no one talks about”.

    So you said the clause doesn’t apply to doctors or various other positions such as most non-medical staff.

    So the doctor does not need to understand the patient when the patient is telling their symptoms?

    The non-medical staff are required to be bilingual -even the morgue tech- dietary – in Cornwall the only staff not required is cleaning staff.

    If you agree that merit should take first -then you would agree with what LFA are doing .
    Myself no matter what you believe or have been informed -was the best candidate -but the hospital clearly decided that the patient was not first but money to implement a policy was !

    I was a critical care nurse prior to dialysis -as for that particular job was dialysis :I had 7 years experience experience in a level one hospital as well as certification in that field .I must make note that I had already been working in Cornwall hospital dialysis dept as casual .

    The person who was hired had no experience or certification and did not work in that department .This was clearly not in the interest of the patient .The manager Nancy Loiselle at the time in fact advised me that I did not receive the job because I did not speak french …..well I guess I did not add up in their Quota required !

    As for you comment that not a single person believes that its about job fairness -I like the fact you speak for everyone here-simply false -as for the hundred e-mails at least daily says it all !

    Our group will always advocate for merit first and job equality ,for this is our mission .

    There are many people at the hospital that feel they cannot speak up for fear of reprisal .
    I say when you cannot speak up in a public institution for that reason its called OPPRESSION !

    Our fight brings us to the many government institutions that the policy of FLSA has dis-proportionality hires from the community .
    The group understands the need for french services but asks the Gov for accountability as well as proportional representation .

    What did you mean by scare tactics ? Truly scary is not hiring the best individual !

    Take care my fellow Canadians…

  10. Mike…….Like I said so many times before, but it doesn’t sink in. Until someone sat through the interview no one can say for sure what transpired. Easy to blame language, but language isn’t the only factor when being interviewed. One’s overall demeanor and presentation plays a major role also. Saying that they hire unqualified people is a disgrace and shameful.

    First it was language, then it wasn’t language, then it became fairness, then language and fairness……it’s a joke…..but one that isn’t too funny for most.

  11. My sister had knee replacement surgery in Ottawa,my sister had to go without her pain meds for the duration of shift of this french only RN who was not qualified because she did not know how to work the medication pump,qualifications are a must over language

  12. So Mr. Chris Cameron,

    After being told you did not get the job because you did not speak french why did you not fight it at the time of the occurence if you felt it was discrimination? If you were so sure that in fact it was discrimination, you would have proven your case and would have nipped the language issue in the bud.

    You say it was discrimination, then why wasn’t action taken? One can’t say it’s a financial thing because had it been proven that it was discrimination the courts or labor board would have ruled in your favor and you would have been compensated the diffenrence in wages and would have been promoted to the job you applied for. Why wait until the famous letter to cry discrimination?

    I may be able to answer that question for you (because I know you won’t)……you knew you could not prove that it was discrimination and knew that you would not win your case PERIOD!!! So……now what do you do?? You try to gather the masses. Liike a group of lemmings they follow their leader and try to divide the community. Shameful and appalling is what it is.

    You can brag about the amount of e-mails you get all you want, the fact remains that you are fooling no one except the most gullible. Waiting for your next demonstration…….should be interesting **smile**

  13. Interesting stellabystarlight. First it was to work in the employees language of choice, then be supervised in the language of choice, then contractors and agencies and institutions oh my.

    Mike Bedard, thank you for being able to see the cause is good. Fairness has seems to be a struggle anyway.

    I believe English Canada (and probably some Francophone’s) get a few sound bites of a few people overtly promoting French and various events in Quebec, that just complain among themselves, and turn the page. Over the years of giving or allowing, we are becoming more vocal. People are beginning to see how changing a few laws, take shape over time.
    English Canada has a history of compromise, even at their own expense. In 1759, not all French were wiped out, 1774 Quebec Act the Civil law and religion allowed to stand, 1867, French added in law.
    Articles such as these do not make it look like peaceful coexistence is attainable. Of course, it is not all Francophone’s and certainly not many in Eastern Ontario, but appeasement is not the answer.

  14. Chris, I’m not familiar with your story…and
    I’m not saying this to be an ass or something but aren’t you worried that posting the names of your superior will get you in more trouble. Isn’t that grounds for dismissal because you posted personal details of your work environment.

    – Mariah …don’t believe you. No nurse in Ottawa will be unilingual french.

    This proportional representation is hard to apply. Because lets face it most anglos aren’t bilingual. So does that mean if 75 percent of cornwall is hire 75 percent anglo. Again, you wont be looking at the qualifications…you’d be looking at putting a language criteria. you hire the best person for the job.and hiring a bilingual person is cheaper…they can serve 100 percent of the clientele while a unilingual anglo can’t.

    If you hire 75 percent anglo…they will come a time when someone in the hospital when…and all the bilingual people will be busy…

  15. my boy bothered me didnt finish my thought… there will come a time that the bilingual person will be busy…and the french person requiring service will have to wait…or speak english. That is not fair.

  16. Eric……OMG …..LOL I always said if an organization is aksing for both languages as a criteria for employment, these requirements must be met in order to qualify. Got that? Quit twisting my words around to meet your needs. You remember me asking what gave you to right and authority to change an organizations hiring practises? That should says it all.

  17. Mariah is the one who once said in response to a letter to the editor that was written by a gentleman in Long Sault by the name of Roger that this wasn’t about LANGUAGE……LMAO Her’s was the 1st post!!!! LOL

  18. Where’s your dance partner stella? did his outing mistake silence him?
    you should come up with some new dance steps as your same old same old is getting stale and and pretty vile.

  19. So he wrote his email ? Who cares ? Vile..Nope, I might be wrong but she hasnt called anyone an ass, asshole, sperm waste, moron, idiot, it’s what we have been called. Who is being vile now ??

  20. Patrick……perds pas ton temps. D’ailleurs elle n’a jamais rien d’important ou intelligent a dire sauf de m’attaquer LOL

    I will say like you who cares **s**

  21. Stella to your comment:

    “Eric……OMG …..LOL I always said if an organization is aksing for both languages as a criteria for employment, these requirements must be met in order to qualify. Got that? Quit twisting my words around to meet your needs. You remember me asking what gave you to right and authority to change an organizations hiring practises? That should says it all.”

    You are still dictating that an Anglophone cannot have any career in a certain field because the organization is asking for someone bilingual. That is what Language Fairness for All wants to change. They would like to have hiring practices fair for all and not just one segment of the population. Language is but one skill amongst many. Would you want someone that knew their job well instead of someone that can speak French and is not qualified? That is what I am trying to tell you over and over again. Mr Cameron is a very good nurse in his department and has been in his field for many years. If I have to be hospitalized, I would rather have Mr Cameron take care of me then someone that speaks French and does not have the skillset that she or he needs to use for my care. ‘Got that’!!!!!

    The policies of only hiring bilingual staff is an injustice in itself and looking at experience instead of language would be a better hiring criteria for any organization.

  22. I want to take this opportunity of thanking Jamie and others at CFN for reporting on this issue of bilingualism.

    For the hours spent moderating our comments, editing and refereeing our endless debate I would also like to give a big thank you.

    For members of LFA and the public at large. As of today, both CFN and the Standard Freeholder have printed my UN letter. For the most part I’ve received positive responses in that people would like to see our current hiring policies and laws reviewed/changed. As of yet, I haven’t viewed any of the major Canadian newspapers carrying the article but I haven’t given up hope yet…

    I will start tomorrow as well sending the letter to major newspapers in the United States as well. I figure the more ceverage of this issue, the better.

    Yours in fairness,


  23. Are you insinuating that I am the vile one, Mr Boucher? lol Ok sure.

    Everything I learned about posting online I learned from stella. She has taught me how to be a bully and to ignore the facts when presented. I have learned that loudest is rightest, and the more times you say something the more you start to believe it. Oh and most of all, I have learned that the more names you have to post with, the more people who agree with you.

    I’ve said nothing to or about you Mr. Boucher and I would appreciate it if you responded in kind.
    Have a pleasant evening.

  24. Hey Stella. Don’t be too smug about French being spoken at the Olympic Games” in LONDON no less”. It is in the Olympic charter, has nothing to do with LONDON.

  25. Hi Chris,

    I hope you don’t see my comments as some form of insult. I only wish to discuss the topic without getting personal like so many do when discussing the topic. Although, it affects so many of us this topic can easily be debated for some time….years….decades even!

    Let’s stick to the facts and stay out of the personal side to keep some form of professional courtesy!

    Firstly, I strongly believe that almost everyone agrees that qualifications come first when selecting a candidate for a job!

    Secondly, putting more years into working in any position does not necessarily ensure that the candidate is better qualified…….accept when examining the level of education and number/level of (valid or relivant) certification!

    Thirdly, If education is equal and a minimal amount of experience is required to be successfull in the position then any Human Resources Professional will tell you that attributes such as language (such as french) is seen as a skill and arguably necessary for some positions; health care being one of those said careers!

    Finally, there is a need for some education on this topic and some adjustment to ensure what you are claiming does not happen since it obviously has! However, to say french is not required or “french only” should not be allowed is regressive in nature and although at first glance seems unnecessary it is actually helping our community and not hurting it as your group has made it seem.

    Please stop the shot gun approach by attacking all that is Francophone and focus on promoting advocating for a better health care system …… that takes care of us all equally!

    Thank You,
    Mike Bedard

  26. P.S. – In the spirit of the Olympic Games I thought this might be enlightening!

    French and English are the official languages of the Olympic Charter. However, during IOC sessions, the Olympic Charter is translated into German, Spanish, Russian, and Arabic. If, at any time, there is a discrepancy between versions of the text, the French text prevails.

    French as a foreign language is the second most frequently taught language in the world after English. It is spoken as an official language in 33 countries around the world and is the only language other than English spoken on five continents. Therefore, French and English are the only two global languages.

    When deciding on a foreign language for work or school, French is the language that will give you the most choices later on in your studies or your career.

    French, along with English, is the official working language of:

    The United Nations
    The International Monetary Fund
    The International Labour Bureau
    The International Olympic Committee
    The 31-member Council of Europe
    The European Community

    French is one of the official languages of:

    Postal services throughout the world
    The International Red Cross

    Ignorance is Bliss but Knowledge is Power!
    Mike Bedard

  27. oooo tricky stella. ouch! you wound me.

    How would you know what I do or do not post, you have said repeatedly you have me on ignore. How can you have an opinion on what I say if you are not reading it? silly goose!

  28. ..stop the shotgun attacks on all francophones Chris..knowledge is power..ignorance is bliss Chris..nothing personal though derogatory insults here..just a whole lot of hot air..who gives a crap about french at the Olympics or the International Montetary funds..this conversation originally started as a letter to the editor from Tombler regarding hiring practices at the we have Cornwall’s brightest bloggers ringing in..embracing you in his arms as a friend and fellow Canadian..all the while trying to get into your girlfriends pants. I hope you don’t see my comments as some form of insult Mike..nothing personal here.

  29. reads more like an educational scolding..the kind that makes you feel good about being called an ignorant jerk.

  30. Mike……..WOW!!! Not trying to get brownie points here but your comments are to be commended!!!!

    Perhaps you can forward them to the newspaper editors around the globe *s*

    You often bring up about personal attacks but let me say this: the names that french speaking people were called at times were disgusting to say the least.

  31. Mikey ;

    Once again the group is not attacking french -its the Gov policy that the group does not like .
    It would be hard to dislike the french as the majority of us are part french or are married to french person .
    This has always been about POLICY .
    Others have made this a language issue ,its continues to be a fair hiring policy .
    Mr Cameron is one of countless thousands that this has happened to …many,many have been discriminated because of policy.
    Oh mike your right ignorance is bliss knowledge is power-but propaganda is king for certain groups!
    Yes french language is part of united nations but so is German and other languages -just because one omits other languages does not mean they are not part of the UN.
    But my how EHTNOCENTRIC of your views all cultures should be respected-
    It has nothing to due with eliminating french as the propaganda goes ,but segregation should not exist.

    Defining language as intelligence is grasping at straws -as language plays only a small part of intelligence -yes a small factor it plays .

    There are people who speak both languages -but clearly and unfortunitly are classified as mentally slow …or disabled .

    But others would Classify(I hate that word)them as intelligent because they speak a second language ?

    REPRESENTATION BY POPULATION-simple solution 21% bilingual community -21 % represented in all Gov facilities .that would be deemed fair and equitable.
    Mr.Cameron is only asking for fairness with gov hiring -Its the groups that disagree who label it a language issue.

    He just showing society where those unjust hiring and laws exist -there are many of them -discrimination is always ugly!

  32. Why is it that the Francophones are making it a language issue ,when it is a Gov hiring policy issue !

    Since when is it justified to hire 250% above that existing in the community -as in the Cornwall Community Hospital .
    Perhaps it could be explained why -federal Gov in Cornwall area hires 300% above the community for bilingualism-66%.

    Its not the Francophones at fault here but Gov policy-who is to blame the Francophones for taking advantage of this -but to blame for defending this policy is another story!

  33. …You can have governmental representation by population when you elect members of parliament ..that I don’t have a problem with. But those members have to take into account the minorities…and their rights. If governmental hires are 75% anglo —25% franco (give or take a percentage point) …it is still unfair. Because again your not looking for the best person…your putting language criteria up front.
    –Most of the members of languagefairyness don’t speak french.. in that is see a problem. Their members refuse to speak though some say they are bilingual…wish I had that luxury to get ahead. Lets face it, howard galganov didnt lose any work or jobs because he’s not bilingual… HE IS…and speaks better french then some francophones…what does that tell you…in my opinion, he just likes to stir the pot and start problems.. like he did in Québec.
    — Bella it is you that called someone vile first…i was just giving you examples of what vile was… and that we are far from that..maybe you didn’t call stella or anyone else nasty names…but some of your counterparts sure did.

  34. ROFLMAO!!!! OMG highlander…..not attacking the french….give me a break that is too funny!!!! When pamphlets are sent out saying that french should be abollished……is that not an attack on french?

    Now it is a policy. Once it was hiring practises, then it was language, then it was not language and now it has always been about policy…….what next? After reading all the post, you came to that conclusion to try and find an answer to the confusion LOL

  35. I have experienced this more then once…. some companies make it a point to hire bilingual staff. And i applaud that…But they don’t have bilingual staff available around the clock…More then once I have called Bell specific departments ( such as cancellations) and they didnt have a french person available…or if I wanted to wait, they would try to find one for me. Now that is not faire. Imagine if someone would walk into a hospital with a serious condition and requested a french speaking nurse or front line staff…would they say…I’m sorry, you’ll have to wait…she’s or he is busy with another person.

  36. ROFLMAO…….now it’s not a language issue………LMAO this is too funny. Honestly, I can’t believe what I am reading. Their agenda changes everyday………..TOO FUNNY!!!!

  37. Oh stella get back to work tax payers should not pay for you to spread propaganda ,Patrick you as well get back to your Gov job is that why you both defend unjust laws and hiring practices?

  38. Patrick you know what I do when I call Bell Canada and I was told to do this. To ask for French because you get a rep right away. If you ask for English, you then wait… and wait …and wait…. What does that tell you? By the way I try this every time I call any
    service industry and you know what it works.

  39. I don’t get it Patrick..I thought you were a teacher at La Citadelle..why the animosity?

  40. – Bella it is you that called someone vile first…i was just giving you examples of what vile was… and that we are far from that..maybe you didn’t call stella or anyone else nasty names…but some of your counterparts sure did.

    No they haven’t. Maybe in your mind they did, but I have not read those words here. In fact, Mr Boucher, can you tell me who wrote the lovely limerick?

  41. Concerned Citizens 2 – Another common thread thrown out by this group is that the Francophone are making this a language issue and yet it was this ludacris group that brought language to the table.

    The anti-french group went to all of the counties and cornwall city council and asked them to stop donating to the hospitals.

    Held a protest outside of an all french clinic!

    At their biggest rally to date and consistantly the only ones foolish enough to jump on the band wagon have been those with personal agendas – Maoyor McGillis (had a daughter passed over for a position at the health unit) and Tammy Hart (couldn’t understand french grammar and didn’t like where french was placed on the long sault pakway sign).

    They have even continued to try make Canada a non-bilingual country stating that only quebec is french and the rest of the country shouldn’t have to respect or even think about the french language………….hence there shoud be no need for anyone to speak french in a public sector job……………….so tell me how is this NOT a language issue!

    Silly Rabbit Tricks are for Kids!

  42. ps Mr. Boucher, exactly who do you think my counterparts are. I’m pretty sure none of them are posting here! lol

  43. Hi Everyone, please no name calling. This is a humble request. Name calling cheapens your argument and creates extra work for your over burdened moderators…

  44. Pseudo all your doing is spreading is propaganda .
    Half truths ,misinformation.

  45. Psdeudonyms…absolutely!!!! It all revolves around personal agendas and entitlement.

    You are also correct when you say that the group brought language to the certainly wasn’t us that’s for sure. But keep in mind it changes……depending which way the wind blows and also it depends on what comes up on a weekly basis. They will go with whatever better suits their agenda. **s**

    Psdeudonyms……when pamphlets are made telling and encouraging people to fight to abolish french……….that says it all!!!

  46. stellabystarlight ( I believe this “group” saw that French was being bought by taxpayer dollars at over 200 Ontario institutions like the Cornwall Hospital, and voiced concern. The concern was already there and flying under the radar!

    People need to fight when government strays, and we are a long way from cost effective core services.

  47. Eric……….please, how many times do I have to tell you, anyone can go on youtube and make a video to suit their agenda……..thanks but no thanks. Not interested!!! I hear enough BS here about the french and french haters, no need to hear more from french bashers…….but thanks anyway, very nice of you to think of me **smile**

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