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Opinion

Canada’s capital city is now officially bilingual

By Jean T. Fournier      

With very little fanfare and almost no publicity over the Christmas and festive season, the City of Ottawa became officially bilingual, in large part, as a result of the resolve and determination of Nathalie Des Rosiers, MPP for Ottawa-Vanier.

Ottawa mayor Jim Watson, pictured on Oct. 12, 2017, at the opening of Terry 'Aislin' Mosher's exhibition of editorial cartoons 'Trudeau to Trudeau' at Ottawa City Hall. The Hill Times photograph by Andrew Meade

OTTAWA—What better way to mark the end of an unforgettable year of celebrations, events, and activities of all kinds across our country and the beginning of a new year. Coming out of the blue and a complete and welcome surprise to most of us, 150 years after Confederation, Canada’s capital city is now officially bilingual. How did something considered unthinkable suddenly seem possible, especially one having to do with official languages and linguistic duality which have proven to be particularly sensitive and controversial issues throughout our country’s history?

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