Infographic: What Canadians think about bilingualism and the Official Languages Act

What Canadians think about bilingualism and the Official Languages Act. Details in text following the infographic.
 
Text version: What Canadians think about bilingualism and the Official Languages Act

Text version: What Canadians think about bilingualism and the Official Languages Act

Bilingualism for all of Canada

Region Bilingualism for all of Canada
Canada overall 84%
British Columbia 82%
Alberta 82%
Prairies 80%
Ontario 80%
Quebec 93%
Atlantic 86%
 
  • 90% of 18 to 34 year olds favour bilingualism for all of Canada
  • 84% of 35 to 54 year olds favour bilingualism for all of Canada
  • 79% of 55 and older favour bilingualism for all of Canada

Individual Bilingualism of Respondents

Statement Percentage
Conversant 32%
Fluent 16%
Don’t know / Refused to answer 1%
Not able to converse 51%
 

Canadians Agree

  • 96% agree: Federal services should be in English and French
  • 87% Agree: Ottawa, the nation’s capital, should be recognized as officially bilingual
  • 82% agree: The 150th celebration is an opportunity to promote Canada’s two official languages
  • 86% agree: The prime minister of Canada should be bilingual
  • 74% agree: Federal cabinet ministers should be bilingual
  • 81% agree: Supreme Court judges should be bilingual

Advantages of Bilingualism

  • Job opportunities: 95% of respondents
  • Provide better service: 94% of respondents
  • Meet Canadians who speak the other official language: 89% of respondents
  • Travel abroad: 89% of respondents
  • Become familiar with another culture: 88% of respondents

8 in 10 Canadians Agree

  • Having two official languages has made Canada a more welcoming place for immigrants from different cultures and ethnic backgrounds.
  • Because English and French are part of our history, it makes sense that they have equal status.
  • Having two official languages is one of the things that really defines Canada.
  • Having two official languages has made Canada a more welcoming place for immigrants from different cultures and ethnic backgrounds.

88% Support the Aims of the Official Languages Act

Support according to language of respondents * Strongly support Somewhat support
Bilingual 68% 25%
Unilingual 44% 41%
French 70% 23%
English 51% 36%
 

*Note: Main official language

Survey conducted by Nielson for the Office of the Commissioner of Official Languages in February and March, 2016. The telephone survey results have a margin of error at the national level of +/-3.1%, 19 times out of 20.

More information

Date modified:
2017-11-08