Reaching out to Ministers
As the Commissioner mentions in the previous section, the protection and expansion of French in Ontario begin with the government being accountable to the citizens. That is why the government must not only be proactive regarding the provision of services in French but also provide comprehensive answers and take concrete measures in light of the Commissioner’s recommendations.
Over the years, although several of the Commissioner’s recommendations were followed and resulted in tangible improvements in the delivery of French services in Ontario and, therefore, in the situation of Francophones across the province, other recommendations were less successful.
The events of last year are a prime example.
In his 2012–2013 annual report, A New Approach, the Commissioner made — and provided solid justification for — three key recommendations to the Government of Ontario: develop an action plan to ensure that disadvantaged populations have genuine access to French-language services; issue a directive regarding an active offer of French-language services; and issue a directive for the creation of a human resource plan for French-language services. The Commissioner received responses that were far from compelling.