Author Topic: The second class citizens of Canada - le règlement 17  (Read 3917 times)

Offline Sheriff Roland

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The second class citizens of Canada - le règlement 17
« on: June 07, 2012, 04:26:50 pm »
Next month  (July 25) will mark the 100th anniversary of the 'regulation 17' (or réglement 17, as we franco-ontarians know it).

The shameful conservative provincial government of Ontario passed a law outlawing the teaching in french in schools in the province. Very few anglo-ontarians are even aware of this effort to create second class citizens by an elected government. The law was followed two years later with 'le règlement 18' which stipulated consequences for teachers and parents who did not comply with 'le règlement 17'.

This action by the Ontario government was a significant factor in causing the 'Two Solitudes' in this country as the leaders of Québec joined in denouncing the law. It was a contributing factor in French Canada being ferociously opposed to the Canadian participation in 'The Great War' - in which conscription was imposed in the latter war years, and in which Francophones throughout the country refused to participate, in spite of the catholic church's edicts (read, bishops).

The law was reluctantly ignored by 1927 (and repealed in1944 - again, during the 'conscription years' of WWII) but only so that the Ontario Provincial government could form an alliance with it's Québecois counterpart against the federal government of the day. French language schools in Ontario were not officially recognized under the provincial Education Act until 1968 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Regulation_17

At the time (1960's), while 70% of Ontarians had a high school degree, only 10% of franco-ontarians were that well educated.

You might say this is ancient history, but in fact, in 1968, I was starting grade 10 ... so this is really about the story of my life.
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