About 20 per cent of $1.4 billion federal languages action plan to go to English in Quebec
About 20 per cent of the $1.4 billion over five years that Ottawa is adding to its action plan on official languages will support English in Quebec, the federal government said on the same day that third reading debate begins on Bill C-13 to modernize the Official Languages Act.
Ottawa does not yet know how much money will go specifically to Quebec's Anglophones.
The 20 per cent figure is, therefore, "an approximation" of what historically represents the distribution of the English-speaking community, said a senior official at the Department of Canadian Heritage who spoke Wednesday on condition of anonymity at a technical briefing.
Of that amount, Ottawa says $137.5 million over five years will support initiatives specifically aimed at Quebec's English-speaking community, it said on the sidelines of the unveiling of the 2023-2028 action plan for official languages. Other initiatives will receive funding based on applications received.
The federal government is also providing funding to support French in Quebec. Specifically, $6.5 million will support the Council of Ministers on the Canadian Francophonie, which includes work to promote French across the country, including in Quebec, and $5 million for arts and culture internships.
There will also be funding for the production and dissemination of scientific content and funding for French second language learning in Quebec.
The additional $1.4 billion is in addition to the historic funding base of $2.7 billion for official languages, which is "ongoing and permanent."
Ottawa's plan aims to support 32 measures around four "axes of intervention": Francophone immigration, official language learning, community development and government action.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published in French on April 26, 2023.