The Quebec government is being criticized for having English-language text on its business-related government websites. Parti Quebecois language critic Pierre Curzi is shocked and wants these words removed (read: censored, redacted, erased) from Quebec government websites.
The government minister in charge of economic development says the government has to provide information in English... for the benefit of folks outside Quebec who read English. Of course, he adds, the governments policy is to deal with businesses in Quebec in French only.
So, in the end, the PQ and governing Liberal Party aren't that far apart on this issue. They both agree that services to Quebec should be in French only. I suppose if there was a way to block the English pages for people stuck in Quebec, the Liberals would do so. (Perhaps they would hire Internet monitors from China to advise them.)
By the way, about 10 percent of Quebecer tax payers speak English as their main language at home.
Quebec under fire for ignoring Bill 101
English features on provincial websites
Canwest News Service
Friday, April 18, 2008
The government came under fire yesterday for flouting the French Language Charter by communicating in English with Quebec businesses amid a heated debate on the survival of French in the province.
The government is posting almost all of its forms, guidelines and leaflets for businesses in English on the websites of Revenu Québec, Investissement Québec and the Autorité des marchés financiers.
The charter, known as Bill 101, states that the government can communicate in English with individuals at their request, but must deal only in French with businesses in the province.