Mr. Speaker, the position of the government is that linguistic minorities all across Canada should not only be entitled to basic services in their own language but should also have the right to control as many institutions as possible which are essential to any community, such as schools, colleges, hospitals, co-operatives.
Like some of my colleagues, I informed the Government of Ontario of my position on the proposed closure of Montfort Hospital the very first day it was announced. As Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs, I will keep asking the Government of Ontario to take into consideration the serious consequences for the Franco-Ontarian community of the closure of the only French language hospital in Ottawa.
Premier Harris has proven to be a great Canadian by giving francophones of Ontario control over their schools. I do hope that he will be guided by the same principles in the case of Montfort, the only French language teaching hospital in Ontario.