Canada Supreme Court Decides Alberta Not Required to Enact Laws in French

Canada Supreme Court Decides Alberta Not Required to Enact Laws in French

Canada’s Supreme Court ruled last week that the constitution does not require the Alberta legislature to enact laws in both French and English.

Gilles Caron and Pierre Boutet, who are both French speakers, challenged traffic tickets which were issued against them in 2003 because the laws and citations were only written in English, which violated their right to legislative bilingualism.

Caren  and Boutet claimed Canadian citizens are entitled  to have their laws created and printed in more than one language. The court then utilized legislative history to show that the drafters did not intend for the law to be enacted and published in more than one language.

The term “legal rights” was not equivalent to “linguistic rights,” because the legislature was aware of how to expressly guarantee linguistic rights, and they had not conveyed it so far in this act.



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