Quebec unions want more French in health, education

Quebec unions want more French in health, education

Unions representing health and education workers are calling for a provincial francization program, saying French should be more present in these networks.

Proposals to this effect will be submitted to the 1,200 delegates attending the 33rd FTQ convention, which will take place next week in Montreal.

Unions affiliated with the FTQ (Fédération des travailleurs et travailleuses du Québec), which represents these workers, are asking the union to work with the government to set up such a francization program.

This would allow these workers to learn to better master French in order to communicate with citizens and their colleagues while being paid.

In an interview, FTQ president Daniel Boyer attributed this phenomenon of lack of knowledge of French, even in the public networks, to the scarcity of labor and the fact that managers had to be hired quickly during the pandemic.

“In the private seniors’ residences and throughout the network, in the public CHSLDs, there are many people, especially workers, who come from immigrant backgrounds, and, yes, there are some who don’t have a good enough command of French, ” said Boyer.

“We must allow them to master French sufficiently and put in place the tools to allow them to do so.”

The phenomenon also affects private companies, Boyer said. He stressed that francization programs in the workplace have proven their worth.

This report by the Canadian Press was first published in French on Jan. 13, 2023.