“Air Canada ordered to pay $21K to two francophones over language violations”

A federal court in Canada “has ordered Air Canada to pay a total of $21,000 to two francophones for repeated violations of their language rights, including seatbelts on which the instruction to “lift” the buckle was marked only in English.” Among other elements in the complaints by Michel and Lynda Thibodeau: “that a French-language boarding announcement made at the airport” in Fredericton, New Brunswick, “was not as detailed as the English-language one” and “that planes’ emergency exit door signs were either in English only, or the English words were in larger font than the French ones.” [Canadian Press]


  • […] H/T: Walter Olson […]

  • Canadian rights tribunals sometimes come up with weird verdicts, but notice the relatively modest amount ($21 K). An equivalent rights verdict in the USA’s lawsuit culture could easily amount to 50 times that. In Canada, however, it sometimes really is “not about the money.”

    Canada has a unique history of bilingual politics that is entitled to some deference. In this case, New Brunswick is the only genuinely bicultural province. (Quebec is francophone, while the others are heavily anglophone.) Fredericton is in the southern, anglophone half of New Brunswick.