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3,500 City of Ottawa Jobs to be bilingual

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"Almost 20% of city jobs will be designated officially bilingual by May and the cost of translation and training services is set to rise to almost $2 million a year. "

http://www.ottawasun.com/News/OttawaAndReg...539826-sun.html

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This is what happens as with the case of Ottawa, Ontario concerning a bilingual language policy which was unilaterally imposed on city residents without the involvement of tax paying Ottawa residents who were left out without a voice in the implementation of this DRACONIAN language policy that mirrors the discriminatory federal official language policy.

This discriminatory language policy will result in the non-hiring of MAJORITY English only speaking candidates in their own MAJORITY ENGLISH SPEAKING CITY if they refuse to learn French.

Ottawa's complete DRACONIAN language policy can be viewed at:

http://www.ottawa.ca/city_hall/policies/bi...y/index_en.html

It should be noted Ottawa's hospitals have the same DRACONIAN federally inspired language policy that serves to undermine the English majority population which results in francophone's being entitled to bilingual jobs that otherwise would be and SHOULD BE majority ENGLISH jobs.

It should also be noted how harmful these undemocratically imposed language policies are without the voice of the tax paying public that pays for them, as it undermines all we have fought for in this country in the way of freedom and democracy.

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Well, that should ensure at least that the civil servant jobs will be held by people of superior intelligence.....

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Well, that should ensure at least that the civil servant jobs will be held by people of superior intelligence.....

I would have to question the superior intelligence bit, since it seems Francophone's and Quebec were never capable of supplying its own population with jobs created within Quebec, utilizing its superior language French.

But I have to hand it to you, that was one one hell of a linguistic PR job Quebec pulled on the ROC.

The English still can't figure it out!

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Ottawa is a bilingual town. Oh look,right next door to Quebec.

I have to laugh when Francophone's call Ottawa a bilingual city when adjacent Gatineau in Quebec just across the Ottawa River remains 'OFFICIALLY UNLINGUAL FRENCH', officially non-bilingual, no bilingual policy period.

Ottawa is not provincially classified as an 'officially bilingual' city but it does have a generous, although like previously mentioned, a discriminatory and undemocratic bilingual policy.

The percentage of people who speak French only in Ottawa is a very small, single digit percentage.

http://www.languagefairness.org/French_Lan...ttawa__2001.php

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If Canada is truly going to be a bilingual country, it should at least start with having a bilingual capital region. I have not been to Gatineau, but if that city's policy is unilingual French and Ottawa is being forced to go bilingual, I think that is unfair.

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....and Ottawa is being forced to go bilingual, I think that is unfair.

Ottawa is not. They have deemed some 3500 jobs as needed to be bilingual.

Sorry guyser, any Canadian city that has a bilingual policy makes that city officially bilingual.

But with the case of Ottawa, it is NOT recognized to date has being provincially officially bilingual so it does not have the full political clout it could have with it being designated as also provincially officially bilingual.

The premier of Ontario is the only person that can authorize that status.

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If Canada is truly going to be a bilingual country, it should at least start with having a bilingual capital region. I have not been to Gatineau, but if that city's policy is unilingual French and Ottawa is being forced to go bilingual, I think that is unfair.

I never heard of any federal mandate to make Canada 'officially bilingual' although it is something the feds are trying to promote but without much success as the French language for all practical purposes is obsolete making it a dysfunctional non commercial language, basically suitable for private use.

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If Canada is truly going to be a bilingual country, it should at least start with having a bilingual capital region. I have not been to Gatineau, but if that city's policy is unilingual French and Ottawa is being forced to go bilingual, I think that is unfair.

Canada will never be a bilingual country, just a country where there are people who speak many different languages.

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If Canada is truly going to be a bilingual country, it should at least start with having a bilingual capital region. I have not been to Gatineau, but if that city's policy is unilingual French and Ottawa is being forced to go bilingual, I think that is unfair.

I never heard of any federal mandate to make Canada 'officially bilingual' although it is something the feds are trying to promote but without much success as the French language for all practical purposes is obsolete making it a dysfunctional non commercial language, basically suitable for private use.

Trudeau introduced official bilingualism in 1969 and since then it has become a cultural myth of Canada.

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If Canada is truly going to be a bilingual country, it should at least start with having a bilingual capital region. I have not been to Gatineau, but if that city's policy is unilingual French and Ottawa is being forced to go bilingual, I think that is unfair.

Canada will never be a bilingual country, just a country where there are people who speak many different languages.

That's probably a fair statement, although I'll bet there are more allophones than francophones currently in Canada.

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If Canada is truly going to be a bilingual country, it should at least start with having a bilingual capital region. I have not been to Gatineau, but if that city's policy is unilingual French and Ottawa is being forced to go bilingual, I think that is unfair.

I never heard of any federal mandate to make Canada 'officially bilingual' although it is something the feds are trying to promote but without much success as the French language for all practical purposes is obsolete making it a dysfunctional non commercial language, basically suitable for private use.

Trudeau introduced official bilingualism in 1969 and since then it has become a cultural myth of Canada.

Of course you are talking about 'official federal government bilingualism', which means all federal entities that are under federal control, i.e. parliament, federal public service, NCC, etc.

This is not the same as declaring all of Canada as 'officially bilingual' as languages comes under provincial control not federal, but nevertheless the federal bilingualism policy is very discriminatory and undemocratic and expensive as Canadian tax payers pay for this discriminatory policy.

http://www.writersblock.ca/spring2002/busword.htm

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I never heard of any federal mandate to make Canada 'officially bilingual' although it is something the feds are trying to promote but without much success as the French language for all practical purposes is obsolete making it a dysfunctional non commercial language, basically suitable for private use.

I use French in business on occassion and I'm in Calgary... so I'm going to say your wrong with that broad generalisation.

Je suis d'accord avec vous que ce bilinguisme n'est pas necessaire toujours pour tout travail de gouvernement. Mais quelque travail a besoin de francais. Pourquoi detestez-vous les gens francais?

I understand that you wish for Canada to become purely English speaking, but it's not realistic. There is no realistic disadvantage for French people to speak French... as long as it doesn't come at a higher cost to the rest of us.

What is the problem with these positions requiring bilingualism? I don't see how the Canadian public would be less well served by someone that speaks two languages? I can see how individuals would be less well served, those applying for the jobs and having inferior qualifications. But me? I don't think I'm hurt by it. Nor is the general public.

I understand that Quebec poses a double standard, but that doesn't mean we should all sink to that level in retaliation.

This is coming from an Anglophone that's French would likely not be at a level acceptable for a bilingual position anywhere and certainly not fluent (anymore).

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That's probably a fair statement, although I'll bet there are more allophones than francophones currently in Canada.

A person who speaks two languages but one is not French or English is not bilingual, they are an allophone. Only in Canada eh.

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I understand that you wish for Canada to become purely English speaking, but it's not realistic. There is no realistic disadvantage for French people to speak French... as long as it doesn't come at a higher cost to the rest of us.

Canada for all practical purposes utilizes majority English as the only commercial language used across Canada, with the French language being artificially pursued by federal government at a very high cost. I quoted with one link being $60-billion dollars, but have seen the cost of the federal government pursuing and implementing bilingualism federally, with estimates as high as $550-Billion.

It was also the federal government who implemented English and French on ALL Canadian packaging of products sold in Canada, with the end result increasing the cost of those products and having many products unavailable to Canadians due to the high cost of translation and associated legalities by private companies who wish or had proposed to sell their products in Canada.

So please we are all not that naive to believe allowing the French to use their language comes at NO COST TO CANADIANS. The cost is extremely high but worse than that is the discriminatory, undemocratic aspect against English speaking Canadians, treating them as insignificant pertaining to the federal government and their bilingualism experiment, by excluding the input of English speaking Canadians concerning the validity of 'federal official bilingualism'.

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That's probably a fair statement, although I'll bet there are more allophones than francophones currently in Canada.

A person who speaks two languages but one is not French or English is not bilingual, they are an allophone. Only in Canada eh.

That is a fact but limited to only Quebec and not all of Canada.

In Quebec 'allophone' defies the definition of bilingual by allowing this word 'allophone' to override the official definiton of the word 'bilingual' in Quebec.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Allophone_(Quebec)

But it is not unusual to see this type of linguistic oppression coming out of Quebec as their French language charter is also extremely oppressive, just as making Quebec unilaterally officially French speaking only, but then again they never did sign the Canadian constitution.

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Canada for all practical purposes utilizes majority English as the only commercial language used across Canada, with the French language being artificially pursued by federal government at a very high cost. I quoted with one link being $60-billion dollars, but have seen the cost of the federal government pursuing and implementing bilingualism federally, with estimates as high as $550-Billion.

It was also the federal government who implemented English and French on ALL Canadian packaging of products sold in Canada, with the end result increasing the cost of those products and having many products unavailable to Canadians due to the high cost of translation and associated legalities by private companies who wish or had proposed to sell their products in Canada.

Like I said, I could care less about bilingualism, I'm not French. That being said, I think about 10% of our population is.

I'd like to see some more information on how you derive these .5 trillion estimates.

Do I doubt it costs? No. Billions perhaps, not that high though.

When a public company prepares it's financial statements in Canada, they require French translation... that runs about $20k. There is alot of publically traded companies in Canada.

Having jobs designated as bilingual only though doesn't really come at that great of a cost. If they are serving both language groups, it's more cost-effective to have one person that can speak both than one of each language.

Unless your thinking that the government should just scrap all French language service and force those Quebecois into learning English.

Hmmm... that'd be fun for about a week.

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That is a fact but limited to only Quebec and not all of Canada.

In Quebec 'allophone' defies the definition of bilingual by allowing this word 'allophone' to override the official definiton of the word 'bilingual' in Quebec.

Wonder if the Swiss have a special word to describe a person who speaks three languages but not one or two of the official languages.

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I'd like to see some more information on how you derive these .5 trillion estimates.

Do I doubt it costs? No. Billions perhaps, not that high though.

Unless your thinking that the government should just scrap all French language service and force those Quebecois into learning English.

I said $550- Billion, sorry, it should have read from 1969 t0 2001, $700-Billion.

http://www.languagefairness.ca/

You seem to think it is okay to impose French into the workings of our federal government and force Canada's majority English to learn this obsolete, non-commercial useless language without no type of controls to prevent domination of the federal government by users of a French minority language but suggest something wrong and discriminating when forcing Quebecois into learning English.

WOW!

Regardless, I never suggested force be applied to for Quebecois to learn English. But from what I can see, it has not done them much good to remain unilingual French in the province of Quebec as they are still reliant on excess federal services and huge equalization payments. In other words they don't have the capabilities of sustaining unilaterally their own French society, so why not freely assimilate with the ROC and be done with it?

Why fight it?

This is what some Quebecers have been doing for years anyways and is the primary reason so many of them are bilingual to-day.

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Je suis d'accord avec vous que ce bilinguisme n'est pas necessaire toujours pour tout travail de gouvernement. Mais quelque travail a besoin de francais. Pourquoi detestez-vous les gens francais?

I understand that you wish for Canada to become purely English speaking, but it's not realistic. There is no realistic disadvantage for French people to speak French... as long as it doesn't come at a higher cost to the rest of us.

What is the problem with these positions requiring bilingualism?

It really depends on how bilingualism is interpreted. Remember that bilingualism was first intended only for areas of the country which had reasonably high francophone populations. It was meant to ensure they could receive service in French, which I think almost all Canadians support. It has been altered over the years by Quebec Francophones within the federal government to become a political tool to ensure Quebecers are disproportionately represented in all federal departments and agencies, especially in the management and executive groups.

Nearly eighty percent of all jobs which are termed "bilingual" are staffed by Francophones - most from Quebec. And though I've seen no statistics, the majority of those jobs staffed by Anglophones go to Quebec Anglophones.

Since all senior positions in the federal government now require the highest level of bilingualism, you can guess who is going to fill them.

I don't see how the Canadian public would be less well served by someone that speaks two languages?

Less qualified public servants, pure and simple. Bilingualism becomes THE major qualifier for all senior jobs, thus disqualifying 95% of applicants. And given a second language is usually peripheral to the actual tasks of the job, you wind up hiring and promoting people who are not very good at those tasks. I've seen it repeatedly in government, where everyone knows who the best people for a job are, but also knows they won't even be considered because they're not bilingual. Whenever a manager is about to leave, and we start thinking who is going to replace them, we don't think about who is good, who is skilled, who is a long-serving, responsible, dedicated employee - we think about those who are bilingual. Because those are the only ones who will be considered by senior management.

And btw, when all those public servants get together to decide on how to interpret policy, how to advise government of changes, what areas of the country to put their budgets, they're certainly going to be strongly influenced by the fact most of them are from Quebec. Have a look, sometime, at the subsidies which go to the dairy industry - largely centred in Quebec - as opposed to the subsidies that go to wheat or beef. In most federal programs money goes disproportionately to Quebec, and that's not always simply because the politicians want to placate Quebec's whining.

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I've got some comments for y'all...

It should be noted Ottawa's hospitals have the same DRACONIAN federally inspired language policy that serves to undermine the English majority population which results in francophone's being entitled to bilingual jobs that otherwise would be and SHOULD BE majority ENGLISH jobs.

Draconian? Who are you to say it's so terrible that bilingualism is evil? Why is Canada predominantly English-speaking? Thank Uncle Sam for that... the English language was shoved down your throat.

Ottawa is not provincially classified as an 'officially bilingual' city but it does have a generous, although like previously mentioned, a discriminatory and undemocratic bilingual policy.

Ottawa should be a "city-state" in my opinion and not be part of the province of Ontario, like Washington DC, Mexico City and Berlin, to name a few examples. Why would this not work? Because if Ottawa becomes a city State, Gatineau joins and would no longer be part of the People's Republic of Québec, meaning seperatists from the communist province would be a strong majority in Québec and surely they would seperate. Honnestly, the people in Québec are friendlier, I would rather live in Montréal than Ottawa if it weren't for the fact that Québec is extremely socialist (and the blasphemy... but that's another issue).

The percentage of people who speak French only in Ottawa is a very small, single digit percentage.

I estimate 5% of Ottawans only speak French. However, easily over third speak it as their first Canadian language (most of this proportion speaks it as a first language, however many speak a language that is neither English nor French as a first, yet learned French before learning English, that is if they did learn English). Just because most Ottawans can speak English doesn't mean they should be expected to use English over French in their day-to-day life. If these francophones wish to be served in their prefered domestic language, that makes as much sense as a bilingual anglophone prefering service in English.

I have not been to Gatineau, but if that city's policy is unilingual French and Ottawa is being forced to go bilingual, I think that is unfair.

I'm for justice yet against fairness. As I mentioned, the best solution in my opinion would be for Ottawa to become a city-state, but alas because of the seperatists that is not preferable, so we live in a compermise. Gatineau is in Québec, a French-language province. Ottawa is in Ontario, officially English-speaking and unoficially bilingual, going by quotas. Why should the municipality of Gatineau be expected to go beyond provincial expectations? Ottawa is complying with Ontarian expectations, and likewise Gatineau is complying with Québec's expectations. There's no need for fairness, because some people will always be more fortunate than others, and that's how we stay away from communism and enjoy what life has to offer. Also, one has the choice as to which side of the river they live, so fairness is not an issue. People are (still) Canadian citizens on both sides, and can freely move within the entire dominion of Canada.

Are there more Chinese speakers than French speakers now?

Ok, this is an incredibly ignorant question (I hope it was rhetorical). Let's pool Mandarin and Cantonese speakers, even if it's not their first language. Let's assume that there is roughly the same number of Canadian residents who are of Chinese origin as those who speak a Chinese language. There are currently just over a million Chinese-Canadians (3.5% of Canadian population). How many people speak French as a first language?! Last count I saw was at 24+% or over nine million. Even if these stats are not perfectly accurate, those who speak French outnumber those who speak a Chinese language (tremendously), so please read your numbers before stating!!!!!

I've got just a little more to say... I speak the big four (English, French, Spanish and German) and I do not identify myself by any language. Ethinically, I'm more Germanic than anything else combined. If the government wants to require language skills for employment, then those considering working for the government should make sure they are bilingual. It's like any job, make sure you have the right skills. One wouldn't start working in medicine or law without having studied it, for instance.

Also, requiring bilingualism for a job is a good idea, because people who are fluent in at least two langauges before puberty have more ease in using a higher brain-capacity. Sure one who speaks a foreign language and a Canadian language would have that advantage in terms of faster thinking and quicker learning yet there are enough candidates who do know both Canadian languages to fill these positions and make use of their skills which are more relevant to the job.

I honestly don't know why so many people are so unwilling to learn a second domestic language. I may still be working on my fourth language, but it is incredibly rewarding.

Whenever I think of Ottawans who only speak one language, I wish them luck in persuing a profession that would not require bilingualism (medicine, law...) or they're welcome to serve me a cold beer when I hit the bar. I honestly don't think these Canadian kids should be working the best jobs without being bilingual... it was taught to them in school, yet they chose not to learn (therefore they're either lazy or terrible learners). Also, I highly encourage English-speaking immigrants to learn French because then they can "steal the Canadians' jobs"... mdr, well I never! It's so easy... learn another language (requires two to five years for fluency while living in Ottawa with reasonnable effort), suddenly one is more skilled than the vast majority! It's that simple! In fact, it's a skill available to Canadians at taxpayers' expense. It's about time the government starts tying ends. Seriously, if "job distribution" is mentioned, only the skilled should work. If the government is hiring, they pick the required skills. Pardon me but I don't think it's possible to get a job in most governments if one does not know the official language(s). Also, suggesting that the government would be hiring less qualified people because they would single-out monolingual applicants is called discrimination. In fact, when the government cannot find qualified bilingual applicants, they fill certain positions with monolingual applicants.

Plus without the French language, Canadians are not really different from Minnesotans (for those who see language as a big part of their identity).

Bilingualism is just, but alas it isn't fair. It's not fair that you were born in Canada and someone else was born in Haiti. It's not fair that there are people who were given more languages at home than me. Life isn't fair, let's keep it that way. Those who attempt fairness only find communism, which isn't fair after all.

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I don't see how the Canadian public would be less well served by someone that speaks two languages?

Less qualified public servants, pure and simple. Bilingualism becomes THE major qualifier for all senior jobs, thus disqualifying 95% of applicants. And given a second language is usually peripheral to the actual tasks of the job, you wind up hiring and promoting people who are not very good at those tasks.

I have to agree with this analysis. From what I hear, most or all public service positions beyond the junior levels are bilingual, which means that 95+% of Canadians living outside of Quebec and 50+% of Quebeckers would not qualify for them. That's 5/6 of the population. Reducing your pool of potential employees to 1/6 its original size just based on language seems pretty dumb. I presume that many of these employees are analysts, researchers, etc. who 1) never see a customer and 2) have a specialized set of skills that are in short supply.

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I've got some comments for y'all...
It should be noted Ottawa's hospitals have the same DRACONIAN federally inspired language policy that serves to undermine the English majority population which results in francophone's being entitled to bilingual jobs that otherwise would be and SHOULD BE majority ENGLISH jobs.

Draconian? Who are you to say it's so terrible that bilingualism is evil? Why is Canada predominantly English-speaking? Thank Uncle Sam for that... the English language was shoved down your throat.

I am not saying bilingualism is evil.

I am saying bilingualism pursued by the federal government is a harsh political measure, when the reality is French for all practical purposes is a not a commercial language of Canada.

If the federal government is trying to satisfy Quebec's political-cultural image as being 'distinct' it should do so utilizing the proper political process which it did not have much luck with in the past, rather than pursue and implement fraudulent measures.

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