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19th Ministerial Conference on the Canadian Francophonie: Cooperation Between Governments Strengthens the Canadian Francophonie

GEORGETOWN ROYALTY, PRINCE EDWARD ISLAND -- (Marketwired) -- 06/27/14 -- Meeting in Prince Edward Island, the provincial and territorial ministers responsible for the Canadian Francophonie have recognized that intergovernmental cooperation contributes to enhance the offer of services in French and to promoting the French fact for the benefit of the Canadian Francophonie and for all Canadians.

"Intergovernmental cooperation is an important and sometimes essential mechanism in the development of the Francophonie," said Robert Ghiz, Premier of Prince Edward Island and Minister responsible for Acadian and Francophone Affairs. "The accumulated experience of the provinces and territories with regard to services in French is a valuable resource that should not be neglected. By sharing our best practices and our strategies in various areas, and by consulting valued stakeholders, we increase the opportunities to strengthen the Canadian Francophonie."

The Conference invited representatives from select municipalities and municipal associations who shared their experiences and highlighted initiatives in support of Francophone communities and related to the delivery of services in French. The ministers recognize that some municipalities are key stakeholders contributing to the growth and promotion of the Canadian Francophonie. The ministers agree to continue their discussions on this topic.

The provincial and territorial ministers discussed the recent budget cuts to the Societe Radio-Canada. They expressed their concern about the impact that the cuts will have on the services provided by the public broadcaster, particularly for Francophone and Acadian communities, in terms of accessibility, quantity and quality. Public broadcasting is critical to the continued flourishing of these communities and the French language across Canada. They will be monitoring the situation closely and evaluating impacts as well as measures that could be undertaken by the Conference or its members, including with the CRTC.

The ministers also welcomed at their meeting researcher Kenneth Deveau, Vice-President Academic at Universite Sainte-Anne. Mr. Deveau came to present the results of a study conducted among Acadians and Francophones in Nova Scotia that looked at factors in the use of government services in French. The ministers had the opportunity to talk to Mr. Deveau about this study and reflect on the role of French-language services in the development of Francophone and Acadian communities.

The next Ministerial Conference on the Canadian Francophonie will be held on June 17-18, 2015, in Toronto as part of the commemoration of 400 years of French presence in Ontario.

The Ministerial Conference on the Canadian Francophonie, created in 1994, is the only intergovernmental forum that brings together the ministers responsible for the Canadian Francophonie. The Conference works for an open, dynamic and diverse Francophonie that contributes to and participates fully in the growth of Canadian society. Visit the website of the Ministerial Conference on the Canadian Francophonie at www.cmfc-mccf.ca.

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