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The very first Official Languages Act was enacted 50 years ago this year. At the very moment when Canada is marking this anniversary, the legitimacy of French as an official language is being challenged in various regions of the country, as illustrated by events in New Brunswick and Ontario in the fall of 2018.
Reasserting the importance of linguistic duality as a core Canadian value is urgently needed. Modernizing the Official Languages Act is a great way to achieve this.
In the past decades, the Act was undermined by issues stemming from structure and government culture. These issues impeded the full implementation of the Act. The FCFA has come to the conclusion that a thorough modernization of the Act – something that has not been done since 1988 – is absolutely necessary.
The FCFA and the communities it represents are determined to be leaders of change on this issue. Following a year and a half of consultation with various partners, the FCFA is proposing its own bill to modernize the Official Languages Act.
Time for Action: The FCFA Proposes a New Wording of the Official Languages Act. This is essentially the master document containing an in-depth analysis of the numerous implementation issues with the current Official Languages Act, as well as proposed solutions to those issues.
Schedule A: an annotated version of the bill showing the changes to the current wording of the Official Languages Act.
Schedule B: the actual text of the bill. Here is the bill proper, which could be introduced as is in the House.
The summary: A two-page document providing an overview of the four key changes to the Act we are arecommending.
Questions & Answers: Supplemental information on the motivations of the Official Languages Act modernization project.
Schedule C: Chart – Coordination of the Official Languages Act, 1969. Illustrates the mechanics of how the implementation of the first Act throughout the federal government was coordinated.
Schedule D: Coordination of the Official Languages Act, 1988. Illustrates how the implementation of the current Act is coordinated.
Schedule E: Coordination of the Official Languages Act proposed by the FCFA. Illustrates how the implementation of the Act as proposed by the FCFA would unfold.
Schedule F: How the Official Languages Tribunal Would Work. Chart showing how investigations and applications for remedies to the Tribunal would happen.
Schedule G: Systemic Investigations at the Initiative of the Commissioner of Official Languages. Shows how investigations initiated by the Commissioner could unfold under the Act as proposed by the FCFA.