Eric Little of Ottawa on Language Service Fairness in Ontario – LTE – July 25, 2013

Eric Little of Ottawa on Language Service Fairness in Ontario – LTE – July 25, 2013

Canada TOPOOver the next few weeks while speaking with friends about various issues of the day, pay attention to your comments. Are you saying oh well, it has been going on a long time, what can you do, you can’t fight City Hall or something else that is similar?  We have become so accustomed to not doing anything for the greater good we just explain it away, or provide some creative justification to continue doing nothing. Sometimes people feel helpless, it is more work than they have time for right now, they don’t want to get involved, or a favorite, that is somebody else’s job. Really? Caring about what you see around you, doing something about it and wanting a better life for your kids is somebody else’s job? Whose?

Henry Ford once said,” if you think you can do a thing or think you can’t do a thing, you’re right.” At first glance that may be a fence sitter position, however if you use it get yourself motivated, it is a rallying cry. You just need to pay attention and connect a couple of dots along the way to get started. Talking about it with friends, posting in Cornwall Free News and sending an email to a politician are all perfect and expected of citizens in a democratic society. So would be joining a group with similar concerns. We certainly see that with hundreds of Francophone groups, the majority of which are funded by all taxpayers including you.

Something that you may take exception to and want to get involved with is how French services are being guaranteed politically, legally and financially. The Ontario French Language Services Commissioner is on record saying “. A designated agency or program provides its supplier with legal immunity that protects it from changes in the economic and political climate”. As far as I know, Ontario does not have an English only government agency or entity, and if there were, they could be shut down in seconds, unlike these “first class” entities and agencies who signed on to the French Languages Services Act.

I am not saying shut down French services, I am saying fairness to all taxpayers has vanished but paying for it is still up to all taxpayers. Jobs are increasingly bilingual but the numbers of bilingual citizens outside of Quebec has stayed stagnant or dropped. Ontario revoked the fairness is a 2 way street act in 2006 allowing more Quebec residents to find work here, should the Ontario government not help its citizens first before other provinces? Certainly Quebec does! Go ahead, get involved or just say, “if you think you can do a thing or think you can’t do a thing, you’re right.”

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James Moak

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