Mr. Speaker, the Harris government's decision to ignore advisor Glen Shortliffe's recommendation that Ottawa become a bilingual city, and now its intention to appeal the Montfort ruling, are insults to the Francophonie of Canada and Ontario.
As the nation's capital, Ottawa must reflect the bilingual nature of our country. As well, francophones and anglophones living in our capital must have access to services in their mother tongue.
Since this shocking announcement, we have had a motion from the Standing Joint Committee on Official Languages calling for bilingual status for Ottawa. But the Prime Minister prefers to wait until he has a chance to speak to Mr. Harris.
Our Prime Minister must show leadership and intervene immediately with Premier Harris in order to defend the bilingual nature of Ottawa.
There is nothing tricky about it: Canada's national capital must be bilingual.