Exemplary Practices

Study on Mechanisms of offer and the demand for French-Language Services in Ontario’s Justice Sector

The Ontario Ministry of the Attorney General funded a study in cooperation with the Department of Justice Canada, on the demand for and delivery of French-language services in Ontario’s justice sector. Conducted by the University of Ottawa’s Research Chair in Canadian Francophonie, this research project will identify the services that are best adapted to Francophones and determine which factors encourage or limit the demand for French-language services in the justice sector. The data from the study will be used to enhance the French-language service offer in Ontario’s justice sector.


The Government of Ontario started the year 2009 with a brand-new website. Ontario.ca is simpler and leaner; it contains dedicated sections for Francophones and for other groups as well, including Aboriginal People and Seniors.

The new interface makes it easier to navigate the website and to find useful, relevant information on the services that are available to Francophones, the important role of Francophone communities in the life of the province, and their efforts to preserve their language and culture.

The Second Annual Ontario Francophonie Awards

On March 19, 2008, at a ceremony in Toronto hosted by Premier Dalton McGuinty, Honourable Madeleine Meilleur, the Minister Responsible for Francophone Affairs, announced that Robert-Guy Despatie and Chad Gaffield were the winners of Ontario Francophonie Awards 2008.

Created by the Government of Ontario in 2006, the Ontario Francophonie Awards honour individuals who have made a contribution to the province’s Francophone community by playing a key role in its development.

These awards are handed out every two years to Francophones and Francophiles who have been active participants in the political, social, and economic vitality of Ontario’s Francophone community.

GO Transit

GO Transit’s timetables, showing routes, schedules, and fares have been published in bilingual format since January, 2007. On June 30th, 2008, GO Transit’s website became available in French.

GO Transit has upgraded its existing LCD signage to a bilingual format in GO’s Concourse and Bus Terminal at Union Station. These signs display train and bus schedule status and train/platform information for customers.GO Transit has also commenced the installation of bilingual directional signage throughout Union and Port Credit stations. These are pilot projects that will inform the approach that GO Transit will adopt in deploying signage across its network within the next few years.

In addition to offering all information relating to routes, schedules, and fares in both languages, GO Transit now provides customer service in French at the Customer Contact Center (1 888 438-6646) for its Francophone clientele.

Kingston French-Language Services Awareness Day

In October 2008, the Kingston Interministerial FLS Designation Planning Committee, chaired jointly by the Ministry of Children and Youth Services and the local ACFO, organized an event to raise awareness amongKingston-based public servants. French Language ServicesCoordinators, as well as human resources and customerservice professionals led notably workshops to the200 members of the Ontario Public Service. The day includedpresentations by the local Francophone community, theOffice of Francophone Affairs, and the Office of the FrenchLanguage Services Commissioner on the active offer concept,and strategies for delivering high-quality governmentservices in French.

Consultation by the Office of Francophone Affairs for its Accent on Youth Strategy

In September 2008, the Office of Francophone Affairs undertook an on-line consultation of young Francophones across Ontario to arrive at a better understanding of their relationship to the French language. Close to 400 young people completed the OFA’s on-line questionnaire, sharing their perceptions of bilingualism. The study reveals that 94% of respondents between the ages of 18 and 22 believe that being bilingual enhances their career prospects in Canada. Close to 500 other young Francophones then took part in regional forums led by the Fédération de la jeunesse franco-ontarienne. The analysis that followed this consultation process led to the launch, in December 2008, of the Accent on Youth Strategy designed to promote the use of French by young Francophones through targeted activities to get them involved in their community.