The Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Tourism, Official Languages and La Francophonie, participated in a forum on official languages in Sherbrooke
OTTAWA, April 15, 2019 /CNW/ - Our official languages are a tremendous asset for Canada. This year, the Official Languages Act turns 50. In addition to a year-long anniversary celebration in 2019, the Government of Canada has initiated a review of the Act to make sure it still meets the needs of current and future Canadians.
As part of a Canada-wide tour, the Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Tourism, Official Languages and La Francophonie, was in Sherbrooke today to take part in a forum on official languages and Canada's place in the world.
French and English are both among the five most spoken languages in the world. Thanks to their presence on the international stage, our two official languages help strengthen the leadership, prestige and influence of Canadian diplomacy in the world, and also allow our culture to spread. The Official Languages Act plays a key part in promoting our languages in Canada, but today's forum examined important questions about its role on the international scene, in international relations and in supporting our cultural exports.
The event brought together various stakeholders from the English- and French-language communities. Drawing on their experience on the ground, participants had plenty of ideas and suggestions for elected officials.
The Sherbrooke forum is one of a series of meetings in several cities across Canada designed to provide Minister Joly with food for thought on the main issues and on the best approaches for modernizing the Official Languages Act.
The Minister invites all Canadians to follow the forums online, as well as share their thoughts and comments on the role of English and French in Canadian society. To do this, they can visit the website.
"The Prime Minister has tasked me with reviewing the Official Languages Act so that it meets the needs of the Canadian population over the coming decades. Laws evolve to reflect the changes in our society. Therefore, it is important to ask ourselves, 50 years after its adoption, how to strengthen this Act that is so fundamental to our country. Our approach is based on open dialogue and meaningful collaboration with key stakeholders. I am grateful to everyone who joined the conversation in Sherbrooke on official languages and Canada's place in the world."
—The Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Tourism, Official Languages and La Francophonie
In June 2018, the Government of Canada announced its intention to modernize the Official Languages Act.
As part of this review, the Government of Canada is conducting national discussions on the following topics:
- Official languages and Canada in the digital age
- Promoting culture and bilingualism
- Federal institutions that embody official languages
- Official languages and Canada's place in the world
- The mobilization, development and vitality of official-language minority communities
This exercise will complement the consultations and reviews already conducted by other bodies in the areas of the administration of justice, the language of government communication, the language of work of federal public servants, the role of the Office of the Commissioner of Official Languages, the promotion of official languages, and debates and parliamentary proceedings.
SOURCE Canadian Heritage
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