The battle of the French language VS the English language has been ongoing forever as far as anyone can remember. Who can forget that when just a few years ago there was that huge debate about companies who have an English name should change it to French? The war between the French and English community has been going on forever and I think it’s safe to say that people are getting fed up.
It’s the law
The Bill 101 which states that French is the official language of the province also states that public signs should only be in French. Therefore, no English signs can be in public areas. That being said, it looks like the Lachute Hospital “was breaking the law” by having bilingual signs. The hospital was contacted by the Office Quebecois de la langue francaise. They were being asked to remove their bilingual signs and to have only French signs. These signs are outside the hospital to guide visitors about where to go.
Last month , Quebec Premier was contacted to comment about the situation. Legault defends the removal of signs and says that the change is necessary.
“We have to follow the law and they didn’t. They weren’t respecting the law. Bill 101 has to be respected that’s what we’ll do,” he said. “As you know, Anglophones will keep on having the right to have services in education in health care. I don’t see the importance of having bilingual signs.”
Obviously the Premier of Quebec doesn’t seem to understand that although the official language of the province is French, there are still several people who speak English as their first language.
Lachute doesn’t have language debates
While Legault supports the idea of removing the signs, not many agree with him. Lachute is a region where they don’t take part in the language debate. Scott Pearce, the mayor of nearby Gore, confirms that Lachute doesn’t have language debates. He also mentions that everyone gets along great, regardless of the language they speak.
A meeting to oppose the change
Last month, a group of nine mayors issued a statement saying they were disappointed that these changes were being forced.
“Even though it is partly in English, this signage in no way constitutes a threat to the quality or promotion of the French language,” the statement said. “On the contrary, excluding English signage in a hospital and health-care setting can be seen as a lack of respect toward members of a community that is very important to (the region.)”
Next week, a meeting is set to take place to adopt a motion where several people will be opposing the changes.
Lachute Hospital already starting to remove English signs
The hospital has already started obscuring English signs since last month. The “Emergency” sign however which is located outside the hospital is still very present. Although the request has been made to remove it, it looks like the task could take a few months to complete. Patients will still be able to receive service in both languages, but the signs must be in French only.
For further information about the story and to get updates, visit https://montreal.ctvnews.ca/legault-defends-removal-of-bilingual-signs-in-lachute-hospital-1.4247129