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Virtually 200 complaints lodged over new GG’s lack of French, language czar says

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Virtually 200 complaints lodged over new GG’s lack of French, language czar says

Canada’s official languages watchdog has got nearly 200 complaints about the present designation of a governor total who doesn’t talk French, his office confirmed on Wednesday.

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Renowned Inuk leader and former diplomat Mary Simon, who will officially become the head of issue in a ceremony on July 26, has said she changed into once denied the likelihood to be taught French whereas in a federal day faculty. She speaks both English and Inuktitut, and has pledged to be taught French.

Peaceable, the complaints are pouring in, essentially essentially essentially based on the commissioner of official languages.

“I even like got a primary number of complaints about the appointment – stop to 200 to this level, because of this to me that linguistic duality is a important price for Canadians,” Raymond Théberge said in a observation emailed to Global News on Wednesday.

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“Since I’m currently reviewing the complaints, my potential to observation at the moment is proscribed.”


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Théberge acknowledged that Simon’s appointment comes at an “important level in our nation’s historical past” and that the appointment of an Indigenous governor total is “the predominant step in direction of reconciliation.”

“I suspect her perspective and journey will no query enable her to make a contribution to the security of Indigenous and minority languages real by arrangement of the nation, which entails our official language minority communities,” he said.

However, he added, “we must at all times no longer neglect that our official language minority communities are turning into extra and extra diverse.”

“Inclusion and appreciate for both official languages are far from mutually abnormal notions,” Théberge wrote.

When pressed on the subject as her appointment changed into once introduced on July 6, Simon explained that her training at a day faculty changed into once the important thing ingredient fighting her from learning French.

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Federal day colleges operated from the 1860s to the 1990s. While they were rush individually from residential colleges, they were serene managed by many of the identical groups that ran residential colleges — and like a within the same style darkish legacy, including allegations of emotional, bodily and sexual abuse.

Regardless of being deprived of the chance to be taught French rising up, Simon has pledged to be taught the language.

“I’m deeply dedicated to persevering with my French language stories and understanding to habits the alternate of the governor total of Canada in both official languages,” Simon said.


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This isn’t the first time a government appointment has come below fire over language-related considerations.

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The Liberals below interim leader Bob Rae adverse the appointment of unilingual Michael Ferguson as auditor total in 2011 for that proper reason, and the overall caucus — including Prime Minister Justin Trudeau — boycotted the House of Commons vote confirming him as such that similar three hundred and sixty five days over his lack of French.

When pressed on the subject on the day of her appointment, Trudeau emphasized Simon’s dedication to learning the language.

“She changed into once born in northern Quebec. Her mother tongue is Inuktitut. She discovered a 2d language, English, within the day faculty she attended because of this of they didn’t educate French there within the ’50s. That’s the actuality,” he said, talking in French.

“She understands the importance of being ready to properly whine all Canadians, and that’s why she’s committing to buy French lessons and to be taught French.”

–With files from Global News’ Amanda Connolly

© 2021 Global News, a division of Corus Leisure Inc.

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Virtually 200 complaints lodged over new GG’s lack of French, language czar says