Québec, November 10, 2017. - Today marks a significant step forward in cooperation regarding the Francophonie between the Governments of Saskatchewan and Québec. The two governments have entered into an agreement for Cooperation and Exchanges in Matters of the Canadian Francophonie.
The agreement will support the Francophone community in Saskatchewan and strengthen ties with Quebec through sharing best practices and expertise in improving programs and services delivered throughout government.
Under the agreement, a cooperation committee will be developed, with representation from the Secretariat du Quebec aux Relations canadiennes and the Saskatchewan Francophone Affairs Branch, Intergovernmental Affairs, Executive Council. The committee will meet annually and assist in establishing priorities for the next five years that consider the needs of Francophone communities in Saskatchewan and Quebec.
“By promoting and strengthening our Francophone communities, we all benefit” said Provincial Secretary Nadine Wilson. “There are always opportunities to do things better, and I am very pleased that we can continue to build off of each other’s strengths.”
The agreement will facilitate Francophone cooperation projects between community organizations in the two provinces. Each government has committed up to $110,000 in funding by 2022 to support these efforts, depending on the number and quality of projects received from community organizations.
“Strengthening the quality of French programming and French language instruction in Saskatchewan schools benefits our students and is a priority for our government,” Education Minister Bronwyn Eyre said. “This agreement allows us the opportunity to partner on innovative projects that will help improve our education system and benefit our students.”
The Government of Saskatchewan and the Government of Quebec also signed a declaration recognizing the contribution of the Canadian Francophonie to Canada. The two provinces will exercise shared leadership roles and their work will serve in promotion, preservation, sustainability and the vitality of the French language in Canada.
“Canada has a comparative advantage vis-à-vis the rest of the world because of to the presence and the dynamism of its Francophone and Acadian communities. Today, our governments are coming together to redefine our cooperation in order to foster the development of the francophone community here in Saskatchewan”, said Quebec Minister responsible for Canadian Relations and the Canadian Francophonie, Mr. Jean-Marc Fournier. Together, we move from a specific agreement in education to a broader and more ambitious agreement aiming to increase our investments, in ten different subject areas. Quebec will also continue to also fund specific projects via a distinct program which supported, last year only in Saskatchewan, six projects for a total of over $35 000. This, not only shows the relevance of cooperation between our two governments but also the cooperation between our government and the Saskatchewanian civil society.”
“I am delighted that this agreement is reached at an opportune time, as this was the first file I raised as ACF president during a memorable tour of Quebec during the Year of the Fransaskois” said President of the Assemblée communautaire fransaskoise (ACF) Françoise Sigur-Cloutier. “I am confident that this agreement will be beneficial for the Fransaskois community and salute the goodwill of our partners.”