ARCHIVED - Minister of National Defence Provides Official Languages Matrix, Commits to Ensuring the Implementation of Corrective Measures

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March 14, 2008

Ms. Mary McFadyen
Interim Ombudsman
National Defence and Canadian Forces
100 Metcalfe Street, 12th Floor
Ottawa ON K1P 5M1

Dear Ms. McFadyen:

Thank you for your correspondence of January 30, 2008, addressed to General R.J. Hillier, Chief of the Defence Staff, Concerning official languages at Canadian Forces Base (CFB) Gagetown, St-Jean Garrison, and CFB Borden.

Ongoing actions and time lines are in place to ensure corrective measures to the issues brought forth by the Ombudsman. Enclosed is the matrix being used by key personnel to ensure compliance with the Official Languages Act. Senior Leadership (and leaders at all levels) is committed to ensuring full compliance with the Act, and we are taking this implementation very seriously. It is expected that all official languages objectives will be implemented in the foreseeable future.

The matrix was designed with goals and activities needed to achieve success and to provide guidance in the form of milestones and responsibilities specific to the Ombudsman report. Land Force Command G1 OL will be verifying the implementation stages through staff assistance visits until April 2008.

Briefings on the points brought forth have been conducted in the respective areas and through the chain of command. The network of official language co-ordinators is enforcing the time lines and reporting data back through a technical chain of command. Clear and concise communication and full support of chain of command is providing for quick turnaround and full engagement from the areas concerned.

Land Force Command constantly strives to contribute and maintain and workplace conducive to the use of both official languages as required by the Official Languages Act. Our linguistic duality is a long standing value that enhances our ability to serve at home and abroad. Our soldiers stand at the heart of every activity we do.

Their interest shapes every decision we make. This includes ensuring effective provisions of services of equal value in both official languages where and when require (through equitable participation, language of work, communication with and services to the public, and the advancement of linguistic minority communities). We are strongly committed for the benefit of all the Canadian Forces and civilian personnel.

Once again, thank you for writing. I trust the information I have provided is of assistance.


Peter G. MacKay

(Official Languages Matrix)

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