High school kids targeted in new Bill 101

Posted By: Canadian Press · 12/5/2012 12:25:00 PM

The new Parti Quebecois government has tabled language legislation that toughens Bill 101.

It says high school students will not be able to graduate unless they can deomonstrate a mastery of the French language. That provision comes into effect in three years.

Bilingual municipalities, like Cote St. Luc and Hampstead, will be evaluated every 10 years and could have their status revoked if the percentage of anglophones drops below 50 per cent.

Also, students who go to Ontario to get an English education for a short time will no longer be able to use that to get into the English school system in Quebec.

But, the legislation will not extend language restrictions to CEGEPs, as the PQ promised in the election campaign.

Nor will it extend them to businesses with more than 10 employees.

If adopted the bill will, however, introduce French-language requirements for companies with more than 25 employees — which is a toughening from the traditional level of 50 employees.

It also says companies would not be able to require people to speak a language other than French, unless the job specifically required it. It offers a complaints mechanism to people who believe their right to work in French is affected.

The minority government had been hinting for weeks that its language legislation would be weaker than what it campaigned on because, with well under half the seats in the legislature, the PQ would have been immediately blocked by the opposition if it presented its originally planned bill.

A nationalist push for a new language law has emerged in recent years amid a steady drumbeat of news reports about Montreal companies forcing all employees to hold meetings in English because a minority can't speak French.

The frequency of these news reports mushroomed last year after controversies in Ottawa over the federal government appointing people who couldn't speak French to key positions — such as one senior government spokesperson, a Supreme Court justice and an auditor general.

The PQ picked up on the theme in its election campaign, and promised to bar access to post-secondary English college to non-anglophones. It also raised the prospect of applying the language law to family businesses, by saying its new bill would affect companies with 11 or more employees.

Neither of those provisions appears in the new bill.

The legislation in the new Bill 14 does say that Quebec's provincial Charter of Rights and Freedoms will be amended to declare that everyone in the province has a right to live, work in, and learn French.

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  1. Jenny posted on 12/05/2012 12:50 PM
    Where are Mr. Jean Marc Fournier (LIB) and Mr. Legault (CAQ) in this decision. Where they not opposed? That's what I would like to know. I guess next time Liberals call me I will tell them to take a long walk off a short peer.
    OPPOSE AND PROTECT THE ANGLOPHONES - that's YOUR JOB Mr. Fournier. I expect this slap from Mr. Legault's party but not yours.
    1. LMAO posted on 12/05/2012 08:44 PM
      @Jenny You really think they care. They have their pensions and care less for the voters especially the Anglo's. We have gutless politicians here and they are not worth anyone's vote. The real truth is the Liberals don't care and the CAQ is just the PQ in sheep's clothing.
      If you want a normal life it's time to leave and move to the real world. It's just a few minutes drive West or East. This will get ugly real quick now.
  2. Wayne posted on 12/05/2012 01:04 PM
    I agree with jenny do not look for me either Mr. Fournier and the Liberals for my vote I will not be there, it seems you do not care about us English people.
  3. Jean posted on 12/05/2012 01:13 PM
    If the PLQ and CQ allow this to pass the new bill 101 plus plus ..... I am leaving the province and believe me thousands will do so as well.this is anti business anti constitutional and discriminatory . Businesses will never come here and neither will new immigrants a huge exodus once again.... Quebec slowly dying the PQ killing us all.
    1. Dana posted on 12/08/2012 11:06 AM
      @Jean Please see my response to LMAO above.

      That's exactly want they want. To bully and intimidate us out of here. Leaving less and less power to the ones that don't want to give up their homes and leave their family and friends.

      This is our land as much as it is theirs. It's our job to fight for our rights!

      The only party that can represent everyone's cultural rights and economic future, open to all the benefits Canada has to offer, is a reformed Liberal party, one with a new transformational and decisive leader. A wise and charismatic leader who will find a way to convince the narrow minded French only speakers that it is to everyone's interest to work together, and to finally stop the intimidation tactics.
  4. Lillouie posted on 12/05/2012 01:27 PM
    There is a big difference in the right to live, work and learn in French than to have it forced down your throat, which is exactly what the PQ are doing to its citizens.
  5. Anonymous posted on 12/05/2012 01:34 PM
    So sad.

    When we bought a company in English Canada, my first question was whether our French Quebec employees appointed to integrate the business spoke any English.

    Thankfully, our employees were able to speak English despite the hurdles erected by our provincial (literally and figuratively provincial) government.

    Talk about harming your own! Pretty soon, Quebec will have to hire Anglophones to manage their business outside Quebec. Qu'est qu'il a dit?

    First the church, now the government. Pathetic. GLTA!
  6. Tad Oberwate posted on 12/05/2012 01:50 PM
    I used to love to speak French but got tired of the government shoving it down my throat. As as result, I stopped speaking french several years ago.
    No shirt or shoes?: no service.
    No English?: No sale... I go somewhere else. I have stiffed a few retailers from some big sales because of this.
    1. Hate speaking French now posted on 12/08/2012 11:25 AM
      @Tad Oberwate Sad to say, but me too.

      Having done primary school and high school (in the same one the disappointing former Minister of Health Couillard attended), I was completely fluent in French.

      After realizing that my French speaking Quebecois friends of many years, would still consider me as an outsider anytime I disagreed with their political views, I escaped their narrow minded world and continued my college and university education in English, as I also wanted to be perfectly fluent in both. It was also while I was in high school on the South Shore that the FLQ violence was happening. What crazy extremists!

      I got turned off of French so much more over the years, especially since bill 101's effects grew, that I only started speaking French again, of my own choice, as a volunteer parent in my kids' French grade school, which I choose for them so that they would be perfectly bilingual, for their own good. Frankly, I still have problems swallowing bill 101. Plus despite my attempts to have my own kids be tolerant and respectful of the French, they are turning more and more resentful of them, as they see the effects on the English and other language speakers here, and their limitations in this province.

      Too bad. Bill 101 was meant to calm the unreasonable fears and lack of self-confidence of the French unilinguals. What it has done is the opposite. It's encouraged them to believe that force is the only way they can protect their world and American minority language.

      It's time for us to speak up louder!
  7. Christos posted on 12/05/2012 02:24 PM
    Do you honestly believe Jenny that the liberals or the CAQ will do anything. Maybe (huge maybe) some of the party will oppose, but most will be for it. Mr. Charest himself said that he wanted to "strengthen' the Bill 101 laws FOR FRENCH. It is upsetting, but unfortunately unless we get up and move to Ontario then we will have to be victims of this forsaken province. I would be shocked (and not much shocks me) if the two opposition parties stand up against this bill.
  8. Dale posted on 12/05/2012 02:30 PM
    When is the ROC going to react to this form of ethnic cleansing? Why would they not lay down some ground rules about what is and is not acceptable in order to belong to the Canadian federation. If Quebec continues to conduct itself in this racist manner then I believe that they should be expelled from the federation. If they refused to leave then the ROC should encourage them to do so. One way would be to amend the Canadian Constitution to declare English as the official language in Canada. If we exclude New Brunswick, which is officially bilingual, then I expect that the percentage of French speaking people in the ROC is so minimal that it does not warrant the expense incurred by supporting two official languages.
  9. Andrea posted on 12/05/2012 03:47 PM
    Sure, pass every kid in elementary school even if they don't know how to read, write or count, but hold back high school students because they can't speak French well enough. What is wrong with these people?
    1. Dana posted on 12/08/2012 11:32 AM
      @Andrea In the end, it is again the French students who will suffer the most.

      The English schools have made great strides in promoting bilingualism in their schools. If they make the French tests even more of a challe, I say: Bring it on!

      The English schools will have to dedicate more time to this and sacrifice other subjects maybe, but they have a much better track record at educating and promoting kids to the next level than the French schools do, as it is.

      If the PQ puts their money where their mouth is (they say they encourage bilingualism), they'll insist that all French schools' students have to pass an English run fluency test also, before graduating. Then we'll see again which cultures' students graduate and graduate smarter
  10. Rosanne posted on 12/05/2012 03:47 PM
    What else is new? Nothing has changed. I think it's time we the citizens of this province take the necessary steps to oppose this new bill. It should be we the citizens who have the right to vote on this and not necessarily the government. We just keep taking everything the government throws and decides for us. We need to take a stand now before this goes even further. It is my right to speak whatever language i choose whether it's at home, school, in the streets or at work!!! We're still a part of Canada & as such we should abide by the Country's & Federal Governments laws not the piquistes laws - haven't they got it through their thick skulls that the people are fed up!!!! I think they'll need to go back to school not only to improve their English skills but their French skills as well. People wake up - take a stand & let your voices be heard - we anglophone will not be extinguished!!!!
    1. orazio posted on 12/06/2012 03:10 AM
      @Rosanne I agree 100 percent of all what you said, we shoud all stand up and fight against the racist ppl, that bill shouldn't never have passed, cause Quebec was always a bilingual province, the right to choose whatever language we wanted to speak.
    2. Hate speaking French now posted on 12/08/2012 11:46 AM
      @Rosanne I completely agree. This is becoming a fascist state.

      My parents culture was threatened also, during the wars in Europe. 1st their territory had to suffer the Ottoman Empire invasion, then the German occupation which forced them to speak German and do nasty things for their army's goals or else, and then their territory became annexed to Italy. The prevailing fascists would beat them if they spoke their language amongst themselves on the street. They did everything to eradicate my parents language, but it survived and they regained their territory.

      I love speaking many languages, as a consequence of my parents' multilingualism and the love of learning they passed on to me. Except, I've become allergic to speaking French, here only, due to the oppression they continuously dole out to non-French speakers.

      We all need to fight for the right to our cultural expression, so far as it doesn't harm other cultures. If we ant to keep our land, homesteads and continue growing what we have worked hard to build so far.

      I too have been thinking for years, why has Canada not kicked Quebec out yet, instead of pandering to its bullying tactics. I think there should be a new Separation from Quebec to join Ontario movement, for those who can do it in stronger English communities, geographically well located to do so.
  11. Mike_S posted on 12/05/2012 04:43 PM
    It also says companies would not be able to require people to speak a language other than French, unless the job specifically required it. It offers a complaints mechanism to people who believe their right to work in French is affected.

    Does this include customer service? How about the hospitality trade? The law would say that francophones can complain if they are forced to speak english. How about all of us who want to be served in english, where is our complaint mechanism?

    All this would do is to enshrine the xenophobia that already exists in many PQ suporters.
  12. francine posted on 12/05/2012 04:43 PM
    What's next - wearing an "A" on our arm?
  13. Larry posted on 12/05/2012 08:17 PM
    High school students in the English system still have to pass Secondary 5 french, with a final exam given by the ministry of education or else they don't graduate. What else does the PQ want them to do?
    1. Name withheld posted on 12/06/2012 08:22 AM
      @Larry Like English, NOT French, doctors and nurses, they will doubtless have to demonstrate the ability to teach French anywhere in the world. That is the usual meaning of the word mastery. Of course, they will not want to speak, write or read the hated language ever again.

      The only intent of these linguistic persecutions is ethnic cleansing.

      What I cannot fathom, is why the people of Canada tolerate ANY restriction at all on the English language.
    2. judith posted on 12/07/2012 03:10 AM
      @Larry Larry, secondary 5 french in the English system is the final exam they are talking about, not a new one. They just rewrite it in the bill as it was before, not a new thing. Don't worry just keep doing the same as before. The reason it is written again or should I say, repeated this way is for the new comers who just immigrated here and, have to be aware of the bill. What is new though and, wasn't there before, is a french exam at the Cegep level to graduate, this is new, I think they said French level 1. which you already get in the secondary level. this is mostly for new immigrant who don't have French at this level.
  14. Steve posted on 12/05/2012 08:31 PM
    I am fed up of quebecers who leave the province because of this. Stay and support the ones who stay behind. Leaving is exactly what they want us to do. I am perfectly bilingual and I am a Quebecer just like the french canadians. Their rights should not be different from mine. Keep the population so they will never have winning conditions.
    1. chuck posted on 12/08/2012 07:01 AM
      @Steve you may be fed up but so are the ones leaving. Show me another part of the country where individual rights are withheld because of language. They(the PQ) have done their utmost to make the climate hostile, the smart ones left years ago. And it will not stop until all english is wiped from quebec. So sad the PQ bigots will win the day on the backs of the english. if another referendum is held they will surely win it. I wonder how the rest of canada will feel about supporting a poverty stricken independent quebec for the sake of political peace?
    2. Arch posted on 12/10/2012 05:47 PM
      @Steve I am one of those English Montrealers who left Quebec for Alberta in 1976.
      What chance did the English stand in Quebec when the federal government allowed the Quebec government to pass bill 22 and bill 101
      When the Supreme court of Canada refused to hear appeals against English merchants who were effected by these draconian laws.
      If Alberta ever enacted these kind of laws against the Fench here ,I'm sure the federal government, and the Supreme Court would not allow these kind of laws to be passed.
  15. Nano Jean posted on 12/10/2012 08:28 AM
    IF madam polin keep teasing montrealer's then eventually she will be the only one who will live in quebec with other quebecios she has no idea that majority of the businesses owned and run by the immigrants in montreal, and she thinks she is doing it right !!! no she is not right absolutly not right i'm currently learning french but i dont think so i'm gona be able to speak it fulently :( the only sentence i speak fluently is oui oui oui lolzzzz
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