November 29, 2021

The Queens County Citizen

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Official Languages ​​Commissioner: More than 1,000 complaints against Air Canada CEO

Official Languages ​​Commissioner: More than 1,000 complaints against Air Canada CEO

The Office of the Official Languages ​​Commissioner has received more than 1,000 complaints from Air Canada boss Michael Rousseau regarding alleged and demonstrated monolingualism. According to Commissioner Raymond Theberz, “That’s a lot.

The sheer number of complaints shows just how influential it is, ”QMI said in an interview with the agency.

Ironically, Mr. Rousseau’s monolingual speech was reported in the Chamber of Commerce’s Metropolitan Montreal by someone at the police station who reported the incident directly to Air Canada. Theberz suggested.

“We were worried about the reaction [de la population]. […] In my opinion, it is unfortunate that our concerns are not accepted, ”he explained.

Many of the complaints came from outside Quebec, Mr Theberg noted, meaning that the entire Canadian francophone was affected, with Air Canada being the largest carrier in the country, directly by law on official languages.

Citing what he called “secularization” of French in federal institutions, the commissioner lamented that Moliెre’s language had often deteriorated to the status of a “translation language”.

“In a bigger context, I think it’s important to realize that there has always been a tragedy around the French in the Canadian context. We drowned in the English – speaking sea in North America.”

Mr Theberz did not want to push the “political” debate over the application of Bill 101 to federal chartered companies on Quebec soil.

  • Listen Interview At the Benoit Deutsche Jack microphone on QUB Radio, with Simon Jolin-Barrett, Minister of Justice and Minister in charge of the French Language:


Despite his apology and promise to learn French on Thursday, Air Canada CEO Michael Rousseau is still reeling from the turmoil. On the contrary: Prime Minister Justin Trudeau added a layer on Friday morning.

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“This is an unacceptable situation and I’m glad the Minister of Official Languages ​​is following it,” Mr Trudeau said as he walked out of an Ottawa pharmacy receiving a seasonal flu vaccine.

Mr. In a statement to the QMI agency on Friday, Trudeau echoed new official language minister Janet Petitpas Taylor, who described Michael Rousseau’s remarks as “unacceptable”.

“I have observed his apologies, but he must take definite action to prove that he takes his responsibilities seriously. It is a matter of honor,” she added.

In the minister’s office, we were assured that we had contacted Air Canada and the Department of Transport to discuss the situation.

M.Me PetitPass Taylor wants to approve a version of the Official Languages ​​Act introduced earlier this year within 100 days of Parliament’s recall. It plans to give more “bite” to the current law and give more authority to the Official Languages ​​Commissioner, including the power to impose more severe punishments.

If the liberal government seems to be taking the issue seriously, others will not hesitate to call for Mr. Rousseau’s resignation. Among them, in Ottawa, are the NDP and the Black Quebecos and in Quebec, the Liberal Party and the Quebec Solidarity.

All of these parties are calling for Bill 101 to be applied to federal chartered businesses on Quebec soil.

Recall that on Wednesday, Michael Rousseau spoke only in English after a very brief opening comment in French. Subsequently, during a scrum, he explained that he had lived in Montreal since 2007 without speaking French.

His answers to journalists were more moldy than his speech in English.

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It should be noted that Air Canada has been alerted by the Quebec Premier Office and the Official Languages ​​Commissioner about the problems that may arise from monolingual speech in the Quebec metropolitan area of ​​Montreal.