Archived - Raymond DesRochers deserves a place in the history of language rights, says Graham Fraser

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Ottawa, April 27, 2010 — The Commissioner of Official Languages, Graham Fraser, has expressed his condolences following the death of Franco-Ontarian Raymond DesRochers yesterday. Mr. Fraser stressed Mr. DesRochers’ contribution to the advancement of language rights.

“The name ‘Raymond DesRochers’ will have a special place in the history of language rights,” said Mr. Fraser. “Driven by belief in his cause, he fought for his community with tenacity and great intelligence. At the end of the day, all official language minority communities will benefit from his commitment.”

In the case of DesRochers v. Industry Canada, heard before the courts between 2004 and 2009, the Supreme Court established that federal institutions must provide services that respond to the specific needs of official language communities, instead of providing identical services to both language communities. The Commissioner of Official Languages acted as co-appellant at Mr. DesRochers’ side when the case was referred to the Supreme Court.

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