March 20, 2019 – Ottawa, Ontario – Global Affairs Canada
The Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Tourism, Official Languages and La Francophonie, today issued the following statement:
“Every year on March 20, francophones and francophiles around the world celebrate the International Day of La Francophonie. This year, with the theme of En français… s’il vous plaît ;-) [In French…please ;-)], we celebrate our commitment to promote the French language and francophone culture, so rich and dynamic, and encourage peace, democracy, respect for human rights and sustainable development which are all values promoted within La Francophonie.
“This year, Canada has one more reason to celebrate. Fifty years ago, we passed the Official Languages Act. The Act established the equality of status of French and English. This fundamental law has given us a model of living together that is the envy of many countries. The last 50 years have allowed the emergence of new generations of Canadians proud of their first language and aware that our linguistic duality represents an important economic, social and cultural capital.
“During this period of festivities, it is important to highlight the extent of the personal, professional, cultural, sports and scientific ties we have made with francophones the world over.
“On this International Day of La Francophonie, the Government of Canada reiterates its commitment to a strong and up-to-date Francophonie, and reaffirms the importance of French and English, as well as Indigenous languages, which are part of our national DNA.
“I wish all Canadians an excellent International Day of La Francophonie!”