Jun 16, 2012
| Posted by:
Monckton News - Views
Full story: blogs.theprovince.com
Canada’s changing linguistic makeup should provide an impetus to revisit bilingualism as currently defined by Ottawa.
A new study by Quebec professor François Vaillancourt and three of his colleagues recently published by the Fraser Institute implicitly raises questions about current approaches to bilingualism.
The authors note bilingualism costs $2.4 billion a year, with $868 million of that spent by the provinces and rest spent by Ottawa.
Duel-labelling requirements that increase the price of Canadian goods and services. That is likely impossible to quantify — one can’t find every expenditure on bilingualism by every private company and add it up — but that’s a real economic cost insofar as some company must comply with federal requirements even where such compliance is silly.
In Quebec, unilingual speakers unable to speak the majority language, French, constitute just 2.4 per cent of the population. Everywhere else, unilingual minorities are tiny, just fractions of a per cent.
Beyond the English in Quebec and francophones everywhere else, it’s useful to consider other “linguistic minorities” to begin an honest discussion about the future of bilingualism in Canada. British Columbia is a good place to start. Its numbers illustrate a significant trend: how other minority languages are swamping French as the top minority language.