Commission on Inclusion
"The Commission on Inclusion was established following certain events related to the question of inclusion. One such event was the 2005 Fransaskois Games/Jeux fransaskois: the Association jeunesse fransaskoise (AJF) decided to include students from immersion schools in the event. The Division scolaire francophone numéro 310 (DSF) subsequently withdrew from the Games and organized its own event for its students. The difference between the two positions led to a public debate over the issues of inclusion and exclusion, of identity and belonging, within the Fransaskois community." (Wilfrid Denis, Ph.D., Foreword, Commission on inclusion, 2006).
To successfully carry out this ambitious and particularly delicate initiative effectively, the Assemblée communautaire fransaskoise (ACF) created the Commission on Inclusion in the Fransaskois Community, which was chaired by Dr. Wilfrid Denis, an elected community representative and sociologist. The Commission appointed six commissioners from the community and academic sectors to analyze the views heard during the public hearings and to make recommendations to ACF representatives.
This report is divided into two parts. The first part will put the problem of inclusion and cultural diversity into context theoretically, comparing it to similar experiences in Canada and around the world. The first part will also summarily describe the sociohistorical context of the Fransaskois reality in order to identify certain dynamics of its relationship with the other and the consequences for contemporary reality.
The second part of the report consists of a series of recommendations divided into four polarities, which serve as a basis for the Commission’s reflection.
Wilfrid Denis, Ph.D., Sociologist, St. Thomas More College, University of Saskatchewan, Elected representative, Assemblée communautaire fransaskoise (ACF)
Rupert Baudais, Attorney
Paul Heppelle, Elected representative and Vice-President of the ACF
Marie LeBlanc-Warick, Saskatchewan Teachers’ Federation
Marc Arnal, Ph.D., Dean of Faculté Saint-Jean, University of Alberta
Alison Hayford, Ph.D., Department of Sociology and Social Studies, University of Regina
Pierre-Yves Mocquais, Ph.D., Department of French, Italian and Hispanic Studies, University of Calgary
Research and Writing:
Frédéric Dupré, M.A., Centre canadien de recherche sur les francophonies en milieu minoritaire (CRFM), Institut français, University of Regina
Report submitted to the Assemblée communautaire fransaskoise (ACF) on September 16, 2006 | Regina, Saskatchewan
Immigration | Pathways to Prosperity
“Pathways to Prosperity” Project Funded by SSHRC
The CRFM is a partner in the Pathways to Prosperity (P2P) Project (Voies vers la prospérité), which receives $2.5 million in funding from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) to support the settlement and integration of immigrants across Canada.
P2P is an alliance aimed at building welcoming communities to promote the civic, economic and social integration of immigrants and minorities in Canada. P2P also helps communities expand their economies, renew their populations and reinvigorate their labour markets by fully welcoming immigrants, international students and temporary foreign workers. Two sectors are particularly important to P2P: northern communities and minority Francophone communities.
P2P includes all federal and provincial ministries with responsibility for immigration; municipalities; local, regional and national organizations involved in the settlement of newcomers; and researchers from more than fifty universities. P2P operates through a central hub and five regional hubs (Atlantic, Quebec, Ontario, Prairies and British Columbia).
The CRFM organizes a number of events each year around themes relating to immigration. Also, since the CRFM’s 2013 research grant competition, priority has been given to projects that mesh with one of the CRFM’s main research areas, among which is “innovative thought on issues relating to cultural diversity and immigration.”
For more information on this project, please see: http://p2pcanada.ca/
Resistance and Convergence: Francophone and Métis Strategies of Identity in Western Canada
The CRFM organized an international conference entitled “Resistance and Convergence: Francophone and Métis Strategies of Identity in Western Canada” from October 20 to 23, 2005. The conference provided a real opportunity for dialogue and exchange between Métis and Francophones, which had not taken place for almost a century. It also created a unique space for interaction between the community and university sectors. More than forty university researchers took part in the conference, as well as over one hundred members of the two communities.
This historic encounter opened up a new field of collaboration with respect to research, which allowed the CRFM to develop a Francophone and Métis comparative research program. The program encourages better understanding of Francophone and Métis communities in a minority setting by fostering a comparison of their respective experience in order to provide them with mutually beneficial tools for community development and intercultural collaboration. The CRFM established a unique model for intercultural dialogue with the travelling roundtables of Francophone and Métis communities of Western Canada from 2007 to 2011. The travelling roundtables served as a starting point for reflection on the development of comparative research rooted in the reality and concerns of both minority communities.
Status of French in Western Canada: The Caron Case
The Association des juristes d’expression française de la Saskatchewan (AJEFS) and the Institut français of the University of Regina jointly organized a bilingual conference entitled “The Caron Case: The Status of French in Western Canada” held February 19–20, 2010, at the Institut français.
The goal of this national conference was to address the many questions that have arisen in the R. v. Caron case in Alberta. Gilles Caron asked that the courts recognize the constitutional status of French in the legislative and judicial processes of Alberta. After a lengthy trial, the Alberta provincial court ruled in Mr. Caron's favour in 2008. A decision by the Alberta Court of Queen's Bench on the government's subsequent appeal is pending.
This conference was both academic and community-oriented and brought together experts in history, law and sociology, as well as representatives of the Francophone communities of Canada. Other noteworthy participants in attendance included:
- The Commissioner of Official Languages of Canada, Graham Fraser,
- Representatives of the Fédération des communautés francophones et acadienne du Canada and
- Representatives of the Fédération des associations de juristes d'expression française de common law.
Two objectives were identified for the conference:
- to further research conducted on the status of French in Western Canada as it pertains to the Caron case and
- to raise public awareness about the issues related to this case.
The full conference program is available below.
After hosting this conference, the Saskatchewan Association of Francophone Jurists (SAFJ) and the Centre canadien de recherche sur les francophonies en milieu minoritaire (CRFM) teamed up to produce an academic publication. The work is intended to shed light on the historical, legal and social issues raised by the Caron case as well as its potential repercussions on the future of the Francophone community in Western Canada. The manuscript is presently undergoing final revision by the work’s co-editors in preparation for publication by Les Éditions Yvon Blais.
Encyclopedia of French Cultural Heritage in North America
The Encyclopédie du patrimoine culturel de l'Amérique française is a multimedia work that has been on-line since 2008. It presents the rich heritage of the Francophone communities of the North American continent. It includes the main manifestations of this heritage, its varied expressions, practices and history. The articles are complemented by numerous visual, sound and audiovisual documents. The Encyclopedia also offers interactive tools that combine texts and multimedia documents. These tools, designed primarily for the educational milieu, allow visitors to learn more about a variety of topics by taking part in question and answer games. The Encyclopedia is a work in progress that is constantly being enhanced with new articles and new multimedia documents.
The project is based at Université Laval in Quebec City, but depends on the collaboration of many partners in Quebec, Canada, France and the United States. The CRFM is a partner in the project, directed by Laurier Turgeon, Director of the Institut du patrimoine culturel at Université Laval.
The CRFM oversees the coordination of articles for Saskatchewan, Alberta, British Columbia, the Yukon and the Northwest Territories. The articles are the product of collaborations with authors from the university and community milieus.
For the CRFM, the encyclopedia is an outstanding opportunity to highlight the heritage of French Saskatchewan, as well as the richness and diversity of the Francophone heritage of Western and Northern Canada.
For more information, please visit: www.ameriquefrancaise.org.