New Democrats are proud that the majority of Conservatives supported their bill on the bilingualism of officers of Parliament and agreed to send it to the Official Languages committee for study. For once, the government has supported a bill it did not initiate. This proves the merits of our bill and the effectiveness of the NDP as official opposition.
The NDP presented Bill C-419, which seeks to make fluency in both official languages mandatory for the ten positions of officers of Parliament, including the auditor general, received huge support throughout the country. More than forty years after the adoption of the Official Languages Act, it is past time for the key positions of officers of Parliament to be declared bilingual.
The NDP is committed to advancing the protection and promotion of our two official languages.
We hope the government will now debate this bill in good faith and in a way that is constructive, to ensure that it is adopted as quickly as possible.