Legislative Assembly committee provides recommendations on languages
Yellowknife, N.W.T. - The Legislative Assembly is now on break, but MLAs managed to get some committee business done before leaving for the summer.
The Standing Committee on Government Operations issued its report on the Language Commissioner's report for 2010-2011 and within it, made several recommendations to move forward on.
Committee chair Michael Nadli says commissioner Sarah Jerome received around 100 inquiries and three complaints under the Official Languages Act, but she also referred cases to mediation or ruled them outside her mandate.
Nadli said Jerome needs to explain why she proceeded that way.
"The committee encourages the commissioner to provide more detailed information on complaints and concerns dealt with that did not go through the complaints process and inquiries in her next report, including past years, so trends can be tracked over time," he said.
Jerome also felt that the word "regime" may have negative connotations for some people and Nadli said the GNWT should go further to fix that.
"The GNWT should consult with residential school survivors and aboriginal language communities on other terminology that may act as a barrier for aboriginal people in asserting their rights under the Aboriginal Languages Act," he said.
The committee also recommended that public servants are aware of sensitive terminology in speaking and writing of official languages.
Deputy committee chair Wendy Bisaro also said Jerome would like to see technology come into play and noted Jerome's work on establishing a directory for interpreters and translators in the NWT.
The committee asked the GWNT to provide a report on the committee's recommendations within 120 days.
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