Archived — Action Plan 2004-2008: Implementation of Section 41 of the Official Languages Act

This publication is also available electronically on the World Wide Web at the following address: www.ic.gc.ca/epublications.

This publication can be made available in alternative formats upon request. Contact the National Coordination Office for Official Language Minority Communities at the numbers listed below.

For additional copies of this publication, please contact:

National Coordination
Official Language Minority Communities
Operations and Small Business Financing Branch
Operations Sector
Industry Canada
235 Queen Street
Ottawa, Ontario  K1A 0H5

Tel.: (613) 941-2471
Fax: (613) 954-4074

Permission to Reproduce
Except as otherwise specifically noted, the information in this publication may be reproduced, in part or in whole and by any means, without charge or further permission from Industry Canada, provided that due diligence is exercised in ensuring the accuracy of the information reproduced; that Industry Canada is identified as the source institution; and that the reproduction is not represented as an official version of the information reproduced, nor as having been made in affiliation with, or with the endorsement of, Industry Canada.

For permission to reproduce the information in this publication for commercial redistribution, please e-mail: Copyright.Droitsdauteur@pwgsc.gc.ca.

Cat. No. Iu70-4/14-2004
ISBN 0-662-68404-4
54193B

Contents

Summary

Section I: General Information

  1. Identification of the department
  2. Industry Canada's mandate and mission
  3. Officers responsible for implementation of Section 41
  4. Period covered by the Action Plan

Section II: Establishing Community Priorities

  1. Identifying the priorities of OLMCs at the national, provincial and territorial levels
  2. Main priorities identified at the national, provincial and territorial levels

Section III: Content of the Action Plan and Time Line

  1. Proposed measures for addressing community priorities
  2. Financial and other resources allocated to the achievement of the Action Plan

Section IV: Communications Plan

  1. Methods for distributing the Action Plan and progress reports, in and outside the department

Section V: Signature

Appendix 1: Details of the Proposed Measures for the Implementation of Section 41

Appendix 2: Key Questions for the Section 41 Lens (in development)

Appendix 3: Webography

Summary

Intended results of the Action Plan

Industry Canada's 2004–2008 Action Plan for the implementation of Section 41 of the Official Languages Act has three intended direct results:

  • Enhanced understanding of the requirements of Section 41 by senior officers and managers of priority programs;
  • Enhanced working relations between official-language minority communities (OLMCs) and the department; and
  • Enhanced understanding of the department's programs and services by OLMCs.

Achieving the three main results through the steps set out in this Action Plan will lead to two intermediate results and one end result.

Intermediate results

  • Increased participation by OLMCs in the department's key programs and the services that are most likely to contribute to their development; and
  • Increased use of knowledge tools that promote the vitality of OLMCs.

Final result

  • An increase in the contribution of OLMCs to Canada's economic development.

Priority approaches

The department will adopt three main approaches: increase internal awareness, enhance community participation in Industry Canada programs and services, consult with communities on an ongoing basis.

Increase internal awareness

Some 150 policies, regulations and programs contribute to the achievement of departmental objectives. All departmental programs are subject to Section 41 of the Official Languages Act. Within this overall framework, the Section 41 Coordination Team will develop three strategies for promoting awareness within the department:

  • An ongoing process to promote awareness among managers and officers in programs that contribute specifically to community development. The officers responsible for implementation of Section 41 will establish close communications with the managers and staff in these programs and will facilitate the establishment of strong working relations with the OLMCs.
  • General awareness-raising among the managers and officers of the department's information and business support programs: the responsible officers will implement communications strategies that reflect community priorities and the requirements of Section 41.
  • Ad hoc awareness: The responsible officers will facilitate communications between the communities and program managers and officers in response to specific requests from the communities.

A detailed awareness promotion strategy will be developed, refined and established during the period covered by the Action Plan. The development of a “Section 41 lens” to examine the initiatives of the department is an important step in raising departmental awareness of the priorities of OLMCs. This tool will give program managers a checklist against which to measure the consideration given to OLMCs in the planning, development and implementation of their programs. Furthermore, Industry Canada has developed the ProAction41 intranet site—a primary source of information about Section 41 of the Official Languages Act. This site was created to help the department's officers and managers understand their responsibilities pursuant to Section 41.

The national coordination team will develop and implement an internal communications plan. It will also provide information, assistance and advice to the managers of priority programs and direct support to the Section 41 regional and program advisors and coordinators.

The Section 41 regional and program advisors and coordinators will also play a key role in raising awareness within the department. Specifically, they will make presentations on the issues involved in the implementation of Section 41 to the appropriate managers.

Enhance community participation in Industry Canada programs and services

CommunAction.ca, an evolving gateway specifically designed for OLMCs, will be enhanced to respond more effectively to the needs of those communities. Information will be disseminated to the communities mainly by the regional and program advisors and coordinators, who will collaborate with regional development organizations, other government partners and relevant community organizations to make the department's initiatives better known.

The national coordination team will support the network of advisors and coordinators in a number of ways. It will develop an external communications plan for the implementation of Section 41 within the department. Specifically, the department will distribute relevant information through community media and through Bulletin 41-42 of the Department of Canadian Heritage—a newsletter that is widely distributed to the inter-ministerial network of Section 41 coordinators and among OLMCs.

Consult with communities on an ongoing basis

Input for this Action Plan was provided through a multilevel consultation process, both within OLMCs and within Industry Canada. Formal consultations took place with representatives of minority Anglophone and Francophone communities in early 2004. This provided an opportunity to validate the programs selected as priorities for implementation of Section 41 of the Official Languages Act in terms of their impact on OLMCs.

Consultations are ongoing. In addition to direct consultations by the department with community representatives, regular meetings will be held with all involved departmental personnel, especially regional and program advisors and coordinators, program and service managers and senior managers.

At the national level, Industry Canada is a member of a number of joint and interdepartmental committees. The department will take part in Privy Council consultations on the official languages and will conduct an annual consultation with community representatives. In addition, the national coordination team will facilitate meetings between community representatives and senior departmental managers.

At the regional level, the regional advisors and coordinators will play a key role by consulting with the communities on an ongoing basis, specifically through active participation in the joint committees established in the provinces by the economic development and employability networks.

For each priority area, managers will consult the communities when a program is being developed or amended to identify the level of priority that the communities place on the program objectives. Recognizing that the specific circumstances surrounding each program vary and that consultation methods must be formalized, this process will be put into effect during the period covered by the Action Plan—more quickly for some programs than others.

Finally, the department will develop the necessary tools for ongoing measurement of performance and will conduct formative and summative evaluations of the implementation of Section 41.

Section I: General Information

1. Identification of the department

Industry Canada
235 Queen Street
Ottawa, Ontario  K1A 0H5

Web site: www.ic.gc.ca
E-mail: ic.info-info.ic@canada.ca
Telephone: 1 800 328-6189

2. Industry Canada's mandate and mission

Mandate of the department

Industry Canada's mandate is to help make Canadians more productive and competitive in the knowledge-based economy, thus improving the standard of living and quality of life in Canada. The department's policies, programs and services promote a dynamic and innovative economy that:

  • Provides more and better paying jobs for Canadians;
  • Supports stronger business growth through continued improvements in productivity and innovation; and
  • Gives consumers, businesses and investors confidence that the marketplace is fair, efficient and competitive.

The department's mission with regard to Section 41 of the Official Languages Act

In accordance with this mandate and the federal government's Action Plan for Official Languages, the department's mission with regard to implementation of Section 41 is to

  • Make departmental programs and services more accessible to OLMCs, thereby supporting their participation in the economic development of Canada in the minority language.

In carrying out this mission, the department has four general objectives:

  • Establish lasting working relations between Industry Canada and the OLMCs and the organizations that represent them.
  • Provide information and services related to economic development that are useful to the OLMCs.
  • Facilitate community access to departmental programs and services.
  • Increase community participation in departmental programs and services.

This Action Plan pertains to Industry Canada only. The regional development organizations (Western Economic Diversification Canada, Canada Economic Development Canada for Quebec Regions and the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency) will develop their own plans for implementing Section 41. The Section 41 coordinators from these organizations have nevertheless contributed to the development of this Action Plan.

3. Officers responsible for implementation of Section 41

Senior management

John McBride Assistant Deputy Minister, Operations
Official Languages Champion
Tel.: (613) 957-4392
Mary Pavich Director General, Operations
and Small Business Financing Branch
Tel.: (613) 954-3449

National coordination

Operations Sector
235 Queen Street, 8th Floor East
Ottawa, Ontario  K1A 0H5

Okenge Morisho Manager, National Coordination Tel.: (613) 954-4083
Anne-Marie Demers Web Site Manager Tel.: (613) 954-2783
Julio Garasa Analyst, Strategic Policy Tel.: (613) 952-4689
Diane Morneau Coordination Officer Tel.: (613) 946-3392
Francine Letarte Project Officer Tel.: (613) 948-1558

Regional advisors and coordinators

Francine Doucet Atlantic Tel.: (506) 851-6087
Roger Lamothe Quebec Tel.: (819) 564-5540
Michel Hall Quebec Tel.: (514) 283-4554
Allan Anderson Ontario Tel.: (416) 954-5447
Laura Cabarrocas Ontario Tel.: (416) 973-6352
Marie Desmarais FedNor Tel.: (705) 670-6109
Michel Loiselle Prairies and Northern Region Tel.: (204) 984-8102
Sandra Douville Prairies and Northern Region Tel.: (204) 983-7850
Nadine Lepage Prairies and Northern Region Tel.: (306) 975-6737
Jean-Pierre Roy Pacific Tel.: (604) 666-1420
Jean Laberge Pacific Tel.: (604) 666-1555

Program and service coordinators

Véronique Lavoie Francommunautés virtuelles Tel.: (613) 957-8177
Lyse Lemay Broadband Services Tel.: (613) 948-5400
Frédéric Nolin Canada's SchoolNet Tel.: (613) 952-5890
Louis Doyle Canada–Ontario
Infrastructure Program
Canada–Ontario Municipal
Rural Infrastructure Fund
Tel.: (613) 954-2390
Pamela Menchions Community Access Program Tel.: (613) 991-0083
Hélène Gagnon Student Connections Tel.: (613) 957-8255
Carole Lafrenière Computers for Schools Tel.: (613) 941-4975
Laura Cabarrocas Youth Internship Program Tel.: (416) 973-6352
Okenge Morisho Tele-training and
Tele-learning pilot projects
under the Action Plan
for Official Languages
Tel.: (613) 954-4083
John Morton Canada Business Service Centres Tel.: (613) 952-0445
Bernard Chabot Information Management/
Information Technology Program
Tel.: (613) 998-1807
Valérie Sirois Language Industry Program Tel.: (613) 954-1854

4. Period covered by the Action Plan

This Action Plan, submitted by Industry Canada to the Department of Canadian Heritage, covers the period from 1 April 2004 to 31 March 2008. It will be updated annually to adapt it to the business plan of the director general, Operations and Small Business Financing Branch, reports on plans and priorities and departmental performance reports.

Section II: Establishing Community Priorities

5. Identifying the priorities of OLMCs at the national, provincial and territorial levels

Input for this Action Plan was provided through a multilevel consultation process, both within the communities and within Industry Canada.

In November 2003, an initial meeting was held with the regional and program advisors and coordinators and Section 41 coordinators of the regional development agencies. Formal consultations were held with Anglophone minority community representatives in February 2004 and with Francophone minority community representatives in March 2004. In all, some 40 representatives of OLMC organizations took part in the consultations.

One fact rapidly emerged during consultations with both Francophone and Anglophone minority communities: the communities knew little about Industry Canada or its programs and services. For many community representatives, this was the first formal contact with the department. The participants noted that Industry Canada must make its programs, activities and services better known to increase participation by their communities. Priorities converged in a number of areas, including access to programs, connectedness, participation by young people and community development.

The consultation process identified 15 programs as priorities for implementation of Section 41 of the Official Languages Act. The Section 41 national coordination team made an initial selection from a detailed list of some 150 departmental policies, programs and services, according to their impact on OLMCs. The final choice of priority programs was validated during consultations. They are listed in part 7 of this Action Plan and the measures proposed for each of the programs are presented in Appendix 1.

Consultations are ongoing. In addition to consultations with community representatives, regular meetings will also be held with all involved departmental personnel, especially Section 41 regional and departmental advisors and coordinators, program and service managers and senior managers.

Official consultations

Industry Canada will hold official annual consultations between community groups and organizations and regional development agencies. These consultations will be the primary means by which the department will engage in a dialogue, allowing the communities to state their priorities and Industry Canada to explain its priorities, programs and services. The official consultations will be supplemented by regular meetings in the field with local advisors and coordinators.

The department also participates in the consultation process with OLMCs set up by the Privy Council Office.

Discussions with community leaders

Industry Canada continues to benefit from suggestions made over the years by many OLMC leaders. The personal ties that have gradually been forged have led to a better understanding of the communities' priorities and of Industry Canada's capabilities and limitations. These exchanges will continue during the years to come.

Participation in interdepartmental and joint committees

Industry Canada is a member of a number of joint committees, including the National Committee of Economic Development and Employability (formerly known as the National Committee for Canadian Francophonie Human Resources Development), the Human Resources Development Committee for the English Linguistic Minority and the Citizenship and Immigration Canada Committee—Francophone Minority Communities. The department works with federal departments and agencies and community leaders in developing strategies to foster the economic development of Francophone and Anglophone minority communities.

The department is also a member of the Privy Council Office Official Languages Support Committee. Interdepartmental meetings have enabled Industry Canada, along with other federal departments and agencies, to respond to the priorities of OLMCs, to develop specific projects and to exchange information, lessons learned and best practices.

Industry Canada will continue to work with federal and community organizations to improve its understanding of community priorities. This will include the department's participation in the Coordinating Committee on Official Languages Research chaired by the Privy Council Office and in studies and research projects.

The Interdepartmental Partnership with the Official-Language Communities (IPOLC)

The aim of this Canadian Heritage initiative is to strengthen interdepartmental activities and to foster the vitality of OLMCs. Industry Canada, together with Canadian Heritage and other federal departments and agencies, will seek to support these communities and to create new partnerships.

6. Main priorities identified at the national, provincial and territorial levels

Consultations between OLMCs and federal departments and agencies have identified the following priorities:

  • Ensure that the department is more aware of and receptive to the priorities of OLMCs and that its managers are aware of the department's obligations under Section 41 of the Official Languages Act.
  • This increased understanding would better enable the department to take into account community priorities in the development and implementation of its programs and services.
  • Ensure that OLMCs become more familiar with Industry Canada's programs, activities and services with a view to increasing their participation.
  • OLMCs would benefit from information about Industry Canada's programs and services, and the department must provide rapid, easy access to all its programs and services. Industry Canada has created a network of regional advisors to work with the communities throughout the country to raise awareness of departmental programs and to support these communities in their initiatives to gain greater access to departmental products and services.

Section III: Content of the Action Plan and Time Line

Context: intended results

Industry Canada's 2004–2008 Action Plan for the implementation of Section 41 of the Official Languages Act aims to achieve three immediate results.

First immediate result: Enhanced understanding of the requirements of Section 41 by senior officers and managers of priority programs

The department would like to ensure that all executives, managers and officers of priority programs

  • Fully understand the priorities of OLMCs;
  • Fully understand the commitments of the federal government as set out in Part VII of the Act; and
  • Can determine whether the policies and programs of the department have an impact on community development and on promoting the recognition and use of English and French in Canadian society, from the initial stages of their development through to their implementation.

Second immediate result: Enhanced working relations between OLMC organizations and the department

All the programs and services of the department are subject to implementation of Section 41. Through this result, the department aims to ensure that OLMCs or the umbrella organizations representing them (or both) are consulted in the development and implementation of programs and policies that are better able to contribute to community vitality.

Third immediate result: Increased understanding of the department's programs and services by OLMCs

The department aims to make organizations more familiar with its objectives, its programs and services, and the limitations of its programs and services.

Achieving these three direct results will lead to two intermediate results and one final result.

First intermediate result: Enhanced participation by OLMCs in the departmental programs and services that are most likely to contribute to their vitality

Once it has been determined what programs and services have an impact on communities, the department will implement appropriate activities to enable the communities to participate more fully in them. For example, such steps might include communications that are more directly targeted at the communities and the establishment of more direct contacts between program managers and the organizations.

Second intermediate result: An increase in the use of knowledge-based resources that promote the vitality of OLMCs

Consultations revealed the great importance that the communities attach to the use of knowledge tools to increase their economic, social and cultural vitality.

Final result: An increase in the contribution of OLMCs to Canada's economic development

The economic vitality of OLMCs contributes to Canada's economic development. A large number of private, community and government agencies will be involved in achieving this result. This result cannot be assessed by the department on its own.

7. Proposed measures for addressing community priorities

Canadian Heritage suggests that the organizations included in the accountability framework for the implementation of Sections 41 and 42 submit summaries of their main actions under six headings. Thus the measures considered by the department are presented under

  • Raising awareness of OLMC priorities among employees and senior management;
  • Consultation with OLMCs on their priorities and on new departmental initiatives, policies and programs;
  • Information provided to OLMCs about departmental programs and services;
  • Coordination within the department and cooperation with other government agencies (federal, provincial and municipal);
  • Departmental products and services; and
  • Evaluation and accountability.

Raising awareness of OLMC priorities among employees and senior management

Through a broad range of programs, products and services, Industry Canada and its many partners create conditions conducive to economic growth and job creation. These include:

  • Placing greater emphasis on science and technology;
  • Evaluating the assistance provided by the Government of Canada to research and development;
  • Promoting the marketing of university research;
  • Improving early access to funding;
  • Facilitating access to markets for small businesses;
  • Contributing to the development of cutting-edge technologies and to the expansion of value-added industry; and
  • Establishing and maintaining the trust of consumers.

Some 150 policies, regulations and programs contribute to the department's objectives. All departmental programs are subject to Section 41.

Within this overall framework, the Section 41 national coordination team will develop three approaches to increasing awareness.

Initial approach: Ongoing awareness measures directed at managers and program officers who can contribute specifically to community vitality: the responsible officers will establish close communications with the managers and employees in these programs and facilitate the establishment of lasting working relations between the programs and the OLMCs. The following programs are targeted for ongoing awareness measures:

All programs of the Federal Economic Development Initiative for Northern Ontario (FedNor) in three key areas:

  • Connectedness
  • Innovation
  • Community partnerships

A detailed description of FedNor programs is provided on its Web site.

All Industry Canada connectedness programs, specifically:

  • Francommunautés virtuelles
  • Community Access Program
  • Broadband Services
  • Information Management/Information Technology Program

All connectedness programs targeting young people:

  • Student Connections
  • Computers for Schools
  • Canada's SchoolNet

Community assistance programs:

  • Community Futures Development Corporations (CFDC) in Ontario
  • (the program is administered by the regional development agencies in other regions)
  • Canada–Ontario Municipal Rural Infrastructure Fund

The Tele-training and Tele-learning Initiative pilot projects (delivered by the Ontario regional office and by FedNor in Ontario and by the regional development agencies in other regions)

Youth Internship Program
(delivered by the Ontario regional office and by FedNor in Ontario and by the regional development agencies in other regions)

Secondary approach: General awareness-raising measures directed at the managers and officers of the department's information and business support services and programs: the responsible officers will implement internal communication strategies with regard to community priorities and the requirements of Section 41. Programs and services where general awareness measures are used will include the following:

All Industry Canada information sites or sites supported by the department, including:

  • CommunAction.ca
  • Strategis
  • Business Gateway
  • Consumer Connection and
  • Canadian Consumer Information Gateway

All business support programs and services, including:

  • Canada Business Service Centres in Ontario, Yukon, Northwest Territories and Nunavut
  • (the program is administered by the regional development agencies in the other regions)
  • Small business funding programs
  • Language Industry Program

Tertiary approach: Targeted awareness: responsible officers will facilitate communication between communities and program managers and officers in response to specific requests from the communities.

In keeping with the provisions of the accountability framework of the federal government's Action Plan for Official Languages, the department will:

  • Raise awareness of the federal government's commitments and community priorities among senior executives, managers and officers in priority programs;
  • Identify the policies and programs that have an impact on community development and ensure that community priorities are taken into account in their development and implementation; and
  • Consult interested community organizations and audiences on the development, implementation and evaluation of the policies and programs affecting them most directly.

The detailed awareness strategy will be developed, refined and implemented during the period covered by the Action Plan. The development of a “Section 41 lens” with which to examine departmental initiatives is an important step in raising awareness within Industry Canada of the priorities of OLMCs. The lens will give program managers a checklist against which to measure the attention given to these priorities in the planning, development and implementation of their programs. Appendix 2 lists the key questions that could form the basis for a Section 41 lens at Industry Canada.

In addition, Industry Canada has developed the ProAction41 intranet site, which is a primary sources of information about Section 41 of the Official Languages Act. It was created to help the department's officers and managers achieve a better understanding of their responsibilities pursuant to Section 41. The site provides information about OLMCs and the Official Languages Act, lists of resource people, organizations and contact points, as well as reference documents, reports and studies relating to this issue.

The national coordination team will develop and implement an internal communications plan. It will also prepare the presentation tools for Industry Canada's official languages champion. The team will develop guidelines for the Section 41 lens and provide information and training in the use of this resource. It will promote the ProAction 41 intranet site and maintain its relevance by continually updating it. Furthermore, it will provide information, support and advice to the managers of designated priority programs and will offer direct support to Section 41 regional and program advisors and coordinators.

The regional and program advisors and coordinators will play an important role in raising awareness within the department. Specifically, they will give presentations to appropriate officers on issues relating to implementation of Section 41.

Consultation with OLMCs on their priorities and on new departmental initiatives, policies and programs

The aim of this approach is to ensure ongoing cooperation with community economic development organizations.

At the national level, Industry Canada will participate in Privy Council Office consultations on the official languages and will hold an annual consultation with community representatives. In addition, the national coordination team will help arrange meetings between community representatives and senior departmental management.

The department is a member of the National Committee of Economic Development and Employability (formerly known as the National Committee for Canadian Francophone Human Resources Development) and the National Human Resources Development Committee for the English Linguistic Minority; a departmental representative sits on the Citizenship and Immigration Canada Immigration Committee—Francophone Minority Communities; and Industry Canada is represented on the Privy Council Official Languages Support Committee.

At the regional level, the regional advisors and coordinators will play a key role in maintaining ongoing consultations with the communities. They will participate actively in the joint committees established in the provinces by the economic development and employability networks and will take part in relevant community activities as required.

For each of the priority programs, the managers will consult the communities or the umbrella organization representing them, or both, when a program is being developed or amended to determine the level of priority the communities attach to the program's objectives. Recognizing the particular circumstances affecting each program and the need to formalize consultation methods, this process will be put into effect during the period covered by the Action Plan—in some programs more quickly than others.

Information provided to OLMCs about departmental programs and services

The CommunAction.ca Internet site will be enhanced to respond better to the needs of its users. This site is an evolving information portal specifically intended for OLMCs. It is both a virtual resource centre providing information on the programs and services offered by the Government of Canada to support community development and a gateway to regional development organizations and other sites of interest to the communities. The site, along with the information added or changed and other improvements, will be evaluated on an ongoing basis using feedback received from the community and the departmental staff involved.

Information will be disseminated in the communities primarily by the regional and program advisors and coordinators, who will work closely with the communities and organizations to provide relevant information about departmental programs and services and regional development agencies.

The regional advisors and coordinators will hold at least one forum in each of the regions during the 5-year period. They will work with local people and, as much as possible, use existing venues such as information fairs, workshops and forums. These regional forums will be directed at organizations and companies in the OLMCs and will provide information about departmental initiatives. They will be organized in cooperation with regional development organizations and other relevant government and community partners. The advisors and coordinators will develop ongoing cooperative relations with the communities, specifically by attending the annual general meetings of relevant organizations.

Furthermore, the advisors and coordinators will prepare promotional items and arrange for their distribution to local and community media via the organizations, networks and media distribution agencies serving OLMCs, where appropriate.

For each priority program and service, Section 41 departmental coordinators will hold regular meetings with the communications officers to establish an ongoing dialogue and ensure that Section 41 is fully considered in their communications strategies.

The Section 41 national coordination team will support the efforts of the network of advisors and coordinators. It will develop an external communications plan for implementation of Section 41, including preparation of presentations on the main departmental programs and services to a variety of external audiences. The national coordination team will facilitate regular contact with communities by having the department participate in such community events as the Rendez-vous de la Francophonie and the community organizations' annual general meetings.

At appropriate times, the department will disseminate relevant information about its implementation of Section 41 through Canadian Heritage's Bulletin 41-42, which is distributed broadly through the inter-ministerial network of Section 41 coordinators and among OLMCs.

Coordination within the department and cooperation with other government agencies (federal, provincial and municipal)

Industry Canada has established structures that are necessary for the effective implementation of Section 41 of the Official Languages Act. The department's official languages champion works actively to promote awareness within the department, particularly among senior management. The national coordination team consists of five people.

A network of eight regional advisors has been created. These people act as communications officers for Section 41, establish ties with the community, inform key official languages players within their organizations, participate in development, implementation and evaluation and foster commitment to the implementation of Section 41.

To achieve its strategic objectives, Industry Canada cooperates with other departments in offering a variety of programs and services to businesses and consumers. These cooperative efforts help establish partnerships with federal, provincial and municipal government agencies and enable Industry Canada to contribute better to multisectoral initiatives affecting OLMCs. The circumstances for such enhanced cooperation and partnerships will be developed on a national, provincial, territorial, regional and even local level, depending on circumstances.

At the national level, the minister of Industry Canada is a member of the Group of Ministers for Official Languages. The deputy minister sits on the Committee of Deputy Ministers of Official Languages. Industry Canada is also represented on the Privy Council Office's Official Languages Support Committee.

The department participates actively in the national network of Section 41 coordinators under the auspices of Canadian Heritage and in the Interdepartmental Partnership with Official-Language Communities. The department will participate in other interdepartmental initiatives that may be undertaken over the next 4 years.

The national coordination team will attend meetings of interdepartmental committees and will provide liaison with the managers of federal programs, services and initiatives directed at the communities. It will contribute to and participate in the implementation of joint initiatives and projects with government or community partners and will support the participation of the department's official languages champion at meetings of the federal government's network of official language champions.

At the regional level, departmental representatives sitting on the councils of senior federal officers in each province will be kept informed of initiatives relating to Section 41.

The regional advisors and coordinators will play an important role in circulating information on the implementation of Section 41 among partners in the three levels of government.

As required, the Section 41 coordination team will propose that research and analysis projects on the use of the various programs and services include a component specific to OLMCs; for example, they might suggest applying the Section 41 lens to a project. Analyses at the regional level will be updated regularly to keep program and service managers better informed. The national coordination team will work with a variety of OLMC organizations in the planning and implementation of research and analysis projects pertaining to the development of these communities.

Departmental products and services

Fifteen Industry Canada programs and services, as well as all FedNor programs and services, have been identified as priorities for the implementation of Section 41 of the Official Languages Act. The Section 41 coordination team made an initial selection from a detailed list of some 150 departmental policies, programs and services, according to their impact on OLMCs. The final choice of priority programs was validated during the consultations described in part 5 of this Action Plan. The proposed measures for each program are described in detail in Appendix 1.

The department recognizes three types of participation in its programs by OLMCs. First, some programs reach out to geographic communities. Through a number of analyses, which are ongoing, the department has determined the location of OLMCs. For 2004–2005, the department identified municipalities where the linguistic minority makes up 5 percent of the total population or a minimum of 5,000 people. This criterion allows the department to identify localities that have been served by a number of programs, such as Infrastructures Canada-Ontario and Broadband. The department also identified areas where there are minority institutions, such as schools or health services, to cross-reference data.

The department plans to refine these analyses and test different methods to ensure that they are consistent with the rationale of the various programs and services. These efforts are aimed at developing definitions and identifying accurately the extent to which the department's programs and services reach OLMCs.

Some programs are aimed at “communities of interest,” which may be confined to a small location or be spread over a large area, even an entire province or territory. Such programs include, for example, Francommunautés virtuelles and the community access centres.

Other programs are implemented through a variety of community partners. In such cases, the department seeks to identify partners who come from the community and represent OLMC interests.

For geographic programs that are delivered through partnerships, the department will add a provision relating to Section 41 by asking the partners to explain

  • How the project will consider the priorities of OLMCs in the area, if applicable; and
  • How the project will facilitate the community's participation in the development, implementation and evaluation of the initiative.

In programs where this proposed provision is subject to consultation, the final wording may change.

Measures planned for all priority programs: A process will be developed to continuously apply a Section 41 lens analysis to the outputs of all priority programs. This tool, which is in development, will provide program managers with a checklist against which to measure the consideration given to OLMCs in the planning, development and implementation of their programs.

Appendix 1 contains a description of priority programs, as well as specific outputs. Appendix 2 lists the key questions that could form the basis for a Section 41 lens for Industry Canada.

Evaluation and accountability

A key indicator will apply to all department efforts: the degree of participation by target groups from OLMCs in the development, implementation and evaluation of programs.

Other performance indicators will be developed for all priority programs to measure progress toward the outcomes described at the beginning of section III of this Action Plan.

The expected immediate results are:

  • Increased understanding of the requirements of Section 41 by senior officers and managers of priority programs;
  • Enhanced working relations between OLMC organizations and the department; and
  • Increased understanding of the department's programs and services by OLMCs.

The development of indicators will be undertaken jointly with the Comptrollership and Administration Sector and with a view to eventually including indicators relating to Section 41 in the performance measurement strategies used for the priority programs.

The national coordination team will conduct a formative evaluation of the Section 41 implementation initiative in 2005–2006 and a summative evaluation will take place in 2007–2008.

8. Financial and other resources allocated to the achievement of the Action Plan

Those responsible for the implementation of Section 41 will work closely with

  • The Comptrollership and Administration Sector, which is responsible for evaluations, audits, some memoranda to Cabinet, submissions to Treasury Board and contribution agreements. The managers of this sector will conduct an analysis of the potential impact on the communities of a range of departmental initiatives and will assess the fulfilment of commitments set out in the Action Plan during operational audits of regional offices. They will then inform the national coordination team of their findings;
  • The Communications and Marketing Branch, to inform it of initiatives involving OLMCs and to make better use of its network of communicators; and
  • Legal Services, to ensure that all possible action is taken to fulfil the department's obligations and commitments pursuant to the Official Languages Act.

Section IV: Communications Plan

9. Methods for distributing the Action Plan and progress reports, in and outside the department

The Action Plan will be forwarded to all national and provincial organizations responsible for coordination and federal organizations that have an economic mandate with respect to OLMCs in Canada.

The department will also forward a copy of the Action Plan to the following:

  • Deputy minister of Canadian Heritage;
  • Commissioner of Official Languages;
  • Deputy Minister, Intergovernmental Affairs, Privy Council Office;
  • Executive vice-president of the Public Service Human Resources Management Agency of Canada;
  • Members of the Committee of Deputy Ministers of Official Languages;
  • Chair of the Standing Committee of the House of Commons on Official Languages; and
  • Chair of the Standing Committee of the Senate on Official Languages.

The Industry Canada Action Plan will be posted on the Internet at: http://www.ic.gc.ca/epublications.

It will also be available on the CommunAction.ca Web site: http://CommunAction.ca.

Section V: Signature

John McBride Dec 6, 2004
__________________________
John McBride
Assistant Deputy Minister
Operations Sector
and Champion for Official Languages
__________________________
Date

Appendix 1: Details of the Proposed Measures for the Implementation of Section 41

This appendix describes in detail the measures proposed for the implementation of Section 41 of the Official Languages Act by Industry Canada.

All Industry Canada programs and services are subject to Section 41 of the Official Languages Act. To make best use of resources in the implementation of Section 41 in the department, priority will be given to 15 Industry Canada programs, as well as all FedNor programs and services, identified because of their impact on OLMCs.

National coordination

The national coordination team is responsible for coordinating plans and activities implemented by the department on a nationwide basis to support OLMCs. In addition, it coordinates the department's efforts with those of federal regional development agencies and other key departments.

The officers responsible for implementation of Section 41 will work closely with the Comptrollership and Administration sector, with the Communications and Marketing Branch and with the department's Legal Services.

The intranet site, ProAction41, is a primary sources of information on Section 41 of the Official Languages Act. It was created to help departmental officers and managers better understand their responsibilities with respect to Section 41. It includes information on OLMCs and the Official Languages Act, and provides lists of resource people, organizations and contacts, as well as reference documents, reports and studies related to this issue.

Expected outputs for 2004–2008

  • Prepare presentation material on the implementation of Section 41 within Industry Canada for the department's official languages champion. The champion will give presentations at various meetings of the Senior Management Committee.
  • Develop guidelines for the Section 41 lens, the department's internal tool designed to raise awareness of OLMC priorities in the development of policies and the implementation of programs and services.
  • Develop and implement tools and information and training sessions on the use of the Section 41 lens.
  • Develop and implement an internal communications plan.
  • Hold regular meetings with the senior managers of priority programs and services and the Information Highway Applications Branch with regard to the development and implementation of new programs.
  • Hold an annual meeting with Legal Services and consult them as required.
  • Provide information, assistance and advice to the managers of priority programs.
  • Examine the issues related to community development and distribute relevant information on the appropriate programs.
  • Contribute to the evaluation of priority programs, as needed.
  • Offer direct support to Section 41 coordinators designated by the programs.
  • Promote the ProAction 41 intranet site and ensure that it remains relevant by continually updating it.
  • Hold regional meetings with advisors, coordinators, and managers.
  • Attend annual meetings with the Communications and Marketing Branch.
  • Attend Privy Council Office consultations on official languages.
  • Hold an annual consultation with community representatives.
  • Help arrange meetings between community representatives and senior departmental officers.
  • Attend meetings of interdepartmental committees and maintain liaison with the managers of programs, services and federal initiatives directed to the communities.
  • Update the Action Plan annually and prepare an annual report.
  • Contribute to and participate in the implementation of joint projects and initiatives with government or community partners.
  • Participate in relevant joint committees at the national level.
  • Prepare presentations on the department's main programs and services to be given to a range of outside audiences.
  • Facilitate program managers' consultations with the communities.
  • Maintain regular ties with the communities by participating in events organized by them, including the Rendez-vous de la Francophonie and annual general meetings of community organizations.
  • Develop an external communications plan for the implementation of Section 41 in the department.
  • Support efforts to implement Section 41 by developing information tools that are accessible for in-house and outside clientele of the department, particularly for the ProAction 41 intranet site and the CommunAction.ca Web site.
  • Disseminate relevant, timely information on implementation of Section 41 in the department through Canadian Heritage's Bulletin 41-42, which is widely distributed through the inter-ministerial network of Section 41 coordinators and among OLMCs.
  • Develop and maintain a database of OLMC organizations with which the department has special relationships.
  • Support active participation of the department's official languages champion at meetings of the federal network of official languages champions.
  • Work with OLMC organizations in planning and carrying out research and analysis pertaining to the development of these communities.

Regional and program advisors and coordinators

In general, the regional advisors are in the field in direct contact with the communities, whereas the coordinators work more often in-house and ensure that Section 41 is always considered in the delivery of programs and services. The mandate of the advisors and coordinators is as follows:

  • Keep abreast of the policies and terms and conditions of programs in the department, at both the program and regional levels.
  • Develop in-depth knowledge of the dynamics at work at the community level and keep appropriate departmental officers informed of the community's priorities.
  • Establish relations between the department and community stakeholders and encourage good relations among community workers.
  • Support contact with other appropriate government partners, including those at the provincial, territorial and municipal levels.
  • Participate in development, all relevant stages of implementation and evaluation and analysis of departmental programs and policies.
  • In developing plans to promote departmental programs, ensure that the priorities of OLMCs are considered and that effective distribution channels are used to reach them.

Expected outputs for 2004–2008

  • Give an annual presentation on issues related to implementation of Section 41 to the relevant committees at the national, regional and program levels identified as priorities (to the senior management committee and managers in the regions).
  • Circulate information on the implementation of Section 41 to partners at the three levels of government.
  • Give a presentation to the senior management committee or the regional executive committee and to managers in the region once a year.
  • Hold at least one regional forum in each of the regions during the 5-year period. These forums will be directed at OLMC organizations and businesses and will publicize the department's initiatives. They will be organized in collaboration with the regional development agencies and other relevant governmental and community partners.
  • Prepare promotional items and arrange for their distribution to local and community media, through the offices of the organizations, networks and media distribution agencies serving OLMCs, where appropriate.
  • Develop an information kit for OLMCs. This kit will contain information on specific programs and contact information for the resource persons.
  • Develop a presentation tool, such as a PowerPoint presentation, for outside clientele.
  • Help update and develop the content of the CommunAction.ca Web site.
  • Promote the CommunAction.ca Web site among partners and within the communities.
  • Hold regular meetings with the communications officers in programs and services to establish an ongoing dialogue and to ensure that Section 41 is considered in their communications strategies.
  • Maintain ongoing communication through regular meetings and written communications, among the regional and program advisors and coordinators.
  • Support the involvement of program officers in community activities, as required.
  • Participate in the main official languages symposia, such as forums, interdepartmental meetings and activities in the communities.
  • Include a component specific to OLMCs in reports and public opinion research on the use of programs and services.
  • Update the analysis of the communities' priorities on a regular basis to better inform the managers of programs and services.
  • Participate in a variety of working groups in the community, as required.

Industry Canada information Web sites

With respect to communication with the communities, the following Web sites, which are already accessible in both official languages, are key sources of information on implementation of Section 41:

Information sites supported by Industry Canada:

The regional advisors and coordinators will promote these sites in the communities and will determine whether additional relevant information is required, particularly for the CommunAction.ca site.

Sectors of the department supporting implementation of Section 41

The national coordination team for of the implementation of Section 41 will be supported specifically by three branches of the department.

Communications and Marketing Branch

In accordance with the Government of Canada Communications Policy, the Communications and Marketing Branch (CMB) manages Industry Canada's advertising, publishing, marketing, public opinion research, media relations and participation in events. The branch provides communications planning and advice to the minister and senior management on communicating ministerial and departmental priorities, policy development, and program planning and implementation, as well as the coordination, production and distribution of speeches, news releases, publications and multimedia materials.

As the communications function is a shared responsibility, the CMB works in close cooperation and coordination with Industry Canada's various sectors to assist in their communications activities.

The national coordination team will work closely with the CMB to keep it informed about initiatives involving OLMCs and to make optimum use of its network of communicators.

Expected outputs for 2004–2008

  • Collaborate on the development of tools designed to make the department's products and services known to OLMCs.
  • Collaborate on the development of the external communications plan for the initiative.
  • Sensitize the departmental network of communicators to the requirements of Section 41, the commitment of the department and the priorities of the OLMCs.

Comptrollership and Administration Sector

The Comptrollership and Administration Sector is responsible for financial management policies, processes and standards, consistent with modern comptrollership and the need to ensure compliance with Parliament's requirements for financial stewardship and honesty.

The sector is responsible for evaluations, audits and some memoranda to Cabinet, submissions to Treasury Board, and contribution agreements. Evaluation will be conducted as outlined in section 7 of the Action Plan. Audits of the initiative will occur in accordance with the risk-based multiyear audit planning process.

Expected outputs for 2004–2008

  • Provide advice and guidance to those in programs identified as priorities to ensure that performance indicators related to the implementation of Section 41 are consistent with other efforts being undertaken.
  • Work with the programs to ensure that indicators related to the implementation of Section 41 are included in program management and accountability frameworks.
  • Support national coordination in the planning and execution of formative and summative evaluations of the Section 41 implementation initiative.

Legal Services

Legal Services provides support to all sectors of Industry Canada, except the Competition Bureau.

The national coordination team will continue to work with the department's Legal Services to ensure that all measures are taken to comply with the department's obligations and its commitments pursuant to the Official Languages Act.

Expected outputs for 2004–2008

  • Hold an annual meeting with the Section 41 national coordination team and working meetings as required.
  • Provide legal advice to programs with respect to requirements for the implementation of Section 41.

Priority programs for the implementation of Section 41

This section contains a description of the Industry Canada programs that were identified as priorities for implementation of Section 41, together with outputs specific to these programs, where applicable.

FedNor—Federal Economic Development Initiative for Northern Ontario

FedNor is an initiative of the Government of Canada that aims to address the economic development needs of Northern Ontario. Working with numerous partners and through its programs and services, FedNor helps fund community projects and other initiatives designed to improve the economic and social well-being of the North as a whole.

FedNor programs and services cover five key areas: connectedness, innovation, trade, investment and community partnerships.

The FedNor Internet site sets out the commitments of the initiative with respect to implementation of Section 41 of the Official Languages Act. FedNor will engage in a series of activities leading to the following outputs:

  • Raise public awareness of Section 41 and of its mandate, programs and services.
  • Enhance the vitality of the Francophone community in Ontario and support its development.
  • Continue to strongly encourage the Ontario Community Futures Development Corporations to support the delivery of quality services in both French and English, where population warrants program delivery in both official languages.
  • Enhance existing programs and services to ensure that the OLMCs are included in renewed programs and related strategies, plans and policies.

In recent years, FedNor has substantially increased the proportion of its staff who are bilingual to respond more effectively to the priorities of Northern Ontario's Francophone communities.

Expected outputs for 2004–2008

  • Continue to support the full implementation of Section 41 of the Official Languages Act in all programs and services.
  • Continue regular consultations and renew partnerships with the Francophone communities of Northern Ontario.
  • Facilitate interdepartmental and intergovernmental initiatives intended to foster the vitality of Francophone communities.

Francommunautés virtuelles

Industry Canada's Francommunautés virtuelles program seeks to promote the participation of the country's Francophone and Acadian communities in developing and using information and communications technology. Since it was established in 1998, the program has supported over 140 innovative Francophone projects seeking to stimulate French-language connectivity, access to the Information Highway, content development and new media. In total, more than $9 million has been invested in Francophone and Acadian communities to enable them not only to have access to high-quality French-language content but also to improve their skills in developing and using advanced technologies. In March 2003, the Government of Canada announced, in the context of the implementation of the Action Plan for Official Languages, an additional investment of $13 million over 5 years. This additional funding will make possible the establishment of an even more active network, bringing together all the Francophone and Acadian communities in Canada to support partnerships and share skills and knowledge.

The objectives of the program are

  • Encourage the development and use of information and communications technology in Francophone and Acadian communities throughout the country to bridge the digital divide in Canada.
  • Create and promote networks of Web sites by expanding cooperation and partnerships within Canada's Francophone and Acadian organizations to contribute to the socioeconomic and cultural development of their communities.
  • Develop French-language Web applications, content and services and make them visible and available through major Canadian portals, including government portals.

Expected outputs for 2004–2008

  • Promote and sustain the increase in online services in French (creation, delivery or updating) to enhance the ability of Francophone communities to participate in the knowledge economy.
  • Finance approximately 200 projects aimed at increasing knowledge and the integration of skills in the area of information and communications technologies within Francophone communities.
  • Establish a bank of Francophone resources to help Francophone organizations and institutions design and develop Web projects that respond effectively to the priorities of the target communities.

Broadband

Broadband constitutes an increasingly important part of Canada's communications infrastructure and its access can be a powerful tool enabling communities to achieve their full economic and social potential.

In June 2001, the National Broadband Task Force reported that 80 percent of Canada's communities did not have access to broadband services and that the cost of $2.4 billion to provide broadband services to public institutions, business and residences should be shared by all stakeholders.

In September 2002, the government launched the $105-million Broadband for Rural and Northern Development Pilot Program. This program is designed to fund the development of business plans and business plan implementation by subsidizing the capital costs for First Nations, northern, remote and rural communities to acquire broadband Internet access. Since the beginning of the initiative, business plan development funding has assisted 463 OLMCs and business plan implementation funding for broadband deployment has reached approximately 115 OLMCs.

Substantial investments in broadband services by the private sector, communities and government testify to the priority placed on this initiative. Funding for the broadband pilot program has now been entirely committed; distribution of the funding will continue over the next 2 years. No decision has been made on the possibility of further initiatives to bring broadband to communities.

Expected outputs for 2005–2008

  • Should a new broadband program be put in place at Industry Canada, the department will:
  • Ensure that the priorities of OLMCs are considered.
  • Designate a person responsible for Section 41 coordination to promote the program among OLMCs and to establish links between these communities and the partners receiving program funding.

Canada's SchoolNet

Canada's SchoolNet supports the integration of information and communications technologies in learning environments, including First Nations schools and public libraries. Canada's SchoolNet family of electronic learning initiatives exploits the enormous potential of technology in the interests of all Canadian learners. Since it began 10 years ago, Canada's SchooNet has listed over 7,000 educational resources on its Web site and has supported the connection of Canada's schools and public libraries to the Internet.

Canada's SchoolNet specifically develops strategies designed to ensure that Francophones in Quebec and in other parts of Canada and the world enjoy equal access to initiatives related to technology, services, learning opportunities, resources and information through the Internet. It creates partnerships with the industrial sector and with other levels of government to promote an effective strategy for increasing public awareness, for use of the Internet, and for the prevention of sexual exploitation of children on the Internet.

Expected outputs for 2004–2008

  • Support existing partnerships with the communities and create new partnerships as applicable.
  • Undertake a study of the priorities of OLMCs and of the quality of and access to services.

Canada–Ontario Infrastructure Program and Canada–Ontario Municipal Rural Infrastructure Fund

Launched in 2000, the Canada–Ontario Infrastructure Program represents a 6-year, $680.7-million federal investment in partnership with Ontario, local offices and the private sector. The program's purpose is to invest in urban and rural municipal infrastructure in Ontario; it is expected to stimulate more than $2 billion in capital investment. Owing to the program's great popularity, all funds coming from the federal government were quickly used and contributions from the Ontario government terminated in summer 2002.

The 2004 budget confirmed a new national infrastructure program, the Municipal Rural Infrastructure Fund, which will inject more than $298 million into Ontario by 2010. The announcement is directed at communities with fewer than 250,000 inhabitants. It targets improved and increased stock of core public infrastructure in areas such as water, wastewater, culture and recreation. The governments of Canada and Ontario reached an agreement on joint management of the fund in this province through the new program's provincial component, the Canada–Ontario Municipal Rural Infrastructure Fund (COMRIF).

Expected output for 2004–2008

  • Include the priorities of OLMCs in project analysis and funding allocation criteria.

Community Access Program

Industry Canada's Community Access Program was designed by the federal government to provide Canadians with affordable public access to the Internet and tools to use it effectively. In partnership with provincial and territorial governments, community groups, non-profit organizations, libraries, schools, volunteer groups and businesses, the program helps Canadians benefit from the opportunities offered by the new global knowledge-based economy. Under the program, public places such as schools, libraries, and community centres serve as “on ramps” to the Information Highway and provide both technical support and training.

The Community Access Program is the cornerstone of the federal government's initiatives to connect Canadians to the Internet. The program was launched in 1994 for rural communities with a population under 50,000. The great success of the pilot program resulted in the extension of the program in December 1999 to larger communities (more than 50,000 people). Since 2002, most program sites have formed networks to pool their resources and offer a broader choice of services to their communities.

The budget allocated to the Community Access Program is $25 million annually for 2004–2005 and 2005–2006. Rather than supporting general public access to the Internet, the program is targeting public access sites that serve communities that need them most (those where the digital divide is greatest) as well as access to online government services.

Expected outputs for 2004–2006

  • Consult OLMCs and consider their priorities during consolidation of the Community Access Program networks. The program is paying special attention to maintaining community access sites that serve Francophone minority communities.
  • Facilitate cooperation between Community Access Program sites serving OLMCs and encourage sites to create linkages.

Student Connections

The Student Connections program hires and trains postsecondary students and new graduates to become student advisors to businesses. It provides small and medium-sized businesses across Canada with personalized, on-site training in e-commerce. It also offers Internet training to seniors. Since 1996, more than 5,200 students have been recruited and over 150,000 clients have received training.

Student Connections works in cooperation with the Association of Canadian Community Colleges. Among the program's regional administrative centres, three serve OLMCs.

Expected outputs for 2004–2008

  • Work in partnership with the administrative centres to elicit participation and provide training and mentoring for students from OLMCs to act as advisors to business.
  • Work with the various community partners, specifically the economic development and employability networks, to serve clientele from OLMCs as appropriate.

Computers for Schools

The national Computers for Schools program is administered by the federal government in cooperation with the provinces and territories, the private sector and the voluntary sector. It collects, repairs and refurbishes surplus computers from government and the private sector and then distributes them free of charge to schools and libraries across Canada. Since it began 10 years ago, the program has distributed close to 550,000 recycled computers to Canada's schools and libraries.

Expected output for 2004–2008

  • Ensure that schools serving OLMCs continue to benefit from the program during the program delivery transition phase.

Youth Internship Program

This initiative will be delivered jointly by the Ontario Regional Office and FedNor in Ontario and by the regional development agencies in other regions.

Industry Canada and the regional development agencies will offer internships, especially work experience projects for young people, who will receive subsidized salaries for work performed in the language of the minority in OLMCs. The department will invest $2 million over 4 years, beginning in 2004–2005, to create 200 trainee positions. This initiative is aimed specifically at young people in Francophone minority communities.

Expected output for 2004–2008

  • Offer young Franco-Ontarians the opportunity to complete internships in French in a Franco-Ontarian business environment to acquire work experience while contributing to the vitality of their community.

Tele-training and Tele-learning Pilot Projects

This initiative will be delivered jointly by the Ontario Regional Office and by FedNor in Ontario and by the regional development agencies in other regions.

The aim of this initiative is to stimulate participation by the Franco-Ontarian community in the knowledge economy by increasing access to content and tele-learning applications. It has been designed to be implemented through partnerships with colleges and universities that primarily serve the Francophone community together with other stakeholders, such as economic development agencies, nonprofit organizations and the private sector.

Over the next 4 years, some $1.8 million will be allocated to the Francophone Tele-training and Tele-learning Pilot Projects initiative in Ontario. Priority will be given to projects that:

  • Provide for strategic partnerships involving organizations that serve the Francophone community;
  • Respond to a recognized priority or need of the Francophone community;
  • Provide long-term benefits for Ontario's Francophone community.

Expected outputs for 2004–2008

  • Offer the Franco-Ontarian population services related to the knowledge economy in the areas of distance education, learning and training.
  • Establish strategic partnerships with institutions, organizations and businesses that serve Ontario's Francophone communities.

Canada Business Service Centres

Canada Business Service Centres (CBSCs) provide a wide range of information about government services, programs and regulations for business people in all regions of Canada. The CBSCs provide the names of resource people, together with specific, current and relevant information.

The CBSCs are the result of cooperation agreements between 37 federal departments that offer services to business, the provincial and territorial governments, and, in some cases, the private sector, associations, the education community and research institutes.

Currently, there are 13 CBSCs, one in every province and territory. The CBSCs also have a growing network of partners providing access to CBSC information in various communities across Canada. The participants and federal partners, who are responsible for the development and management of the CBSCs, vary from province to province. A national secretariat, located in Ottawa, is responsible for supporting the CBSCs and maintaining the technical network, information databases and products. It is also responsible for the centres' Web site.

Services are available by telephone, fax, e-mail, on the Web and in person.

Industry Canada serves Ontario, the Yukon, the Northwest Territories and Nunavut directly. In other regions, the program is managed by the regional development agencies.

Expected output for 2004–2008

  • Consult with the communities, support the partnerships established with the communities and their organizations and create new partnerships as appropriate.

Information Management/Information Technology Program

Industry Canada's Information Management/Information Technology (IM/IT) Program is helping to strengthen the voluntary sector through technology. It is part of the Voluntary Sector Initiative (VSI), a joint venture between the Government of Canada and Canada's voluntary sector. The VSI works to strengthen the voluntary sector's ability to serve Canadians while enhancing its relationship with the Government of Canada.

The IM/IT joint table, which was one of six VSI joint tables, was created to provide recommendations on how to improve the technological capacity of Canada's voluntary sector. In February 2003, it released a report, Strengthening Voluntary Sector Capacity Through Technology. Industry Canada's IM/IT Secretariat is responsible for managing the implementation of the report. The actual implementation, including the selection of project implementation teams, will be shared with the voluntary sector.

The IM/IT Secretariat is working closely with an advisory group composed of representatives of the voluntary sector and the federal government in implementing the IM/IT strategy.

Expected outputs for 2004–2008

  • Continue to develop the Francophone side of the voluntary sector portal, aiming at full participation of Francophone minority communities.
  • Ensure that OLMCs receive the services in their language of choice via the IM/IT network and the voluntary sector portal.

Language Industry Program

This Industry Canada program is based on the Action Plan for Official Languages and the Canada Innovation Strategy. Its aim is to work in cooperation with the private sector to build a solid, competitive industry. The program provides up to $10,000 annually to small and medium-sized businesses to enable them to undertake marketing and branding activities.

Expected outputs for 2004–2008

  • Work in partnership with the OLMCs to ensure that they are represented on the advisory committee for the Language Industry Program.
  • Implement a communications strategy to raise awareness of the program among the communities.
  • Encourage contact between the Language Industry Program, the National Research Council Canada and the communities, and encourage partnerships, where applicable.

Appendix 2: 2 Key Questions for the Section 41 Lens (in development)

A detailed internal awareness strategy will be developed, refined and established during the period covered by the Action Plan.

The development of a Section 41 lens for looking at departmental initiatives will contribute significantly to raising awareness of the priorities of OLMCs within Industry Canada. This approach will provide program managers with a checklist to focus attention on the priorities of OLMCs during the planning, development and implementation of their programs. It can help to identify initiatives or activities—existing or needed—that may have an important impact on the development of OLMCs.

To comply with the accountability framework of the federal government's Action Plan for Official Languages, the department will

  • Make senior executives, managers and officers of priority programs aware of the federal government's commitments and of community priorities.
  • Identify the policies and programs that have an impact on community development and ensure that community priorities are taken into account during their development and implementation.
  • Consult with audiences and community organizations involved in the development, implementation and evaluation of policies and programs that affect them most directly.

The following key questions may form the basis for a Section 41 lens at Industry Canada.

During the planning process

How is this initiative relevant to OLMCs?

Have the most likely positive and negative effects on OLMCs been identified and, where relevant, how can they be measured?

Does the initiative address a development priority identified by OLMCs?

Have OLMCs been consulted during development or modification of the initiative?

Delivery

What factors in the delivery of the program, policy or service affect OLMCs?

Do the delivery tools accommodate the concerns of OLMCs?

Is there a way to create or participate in partnerships with organizations (e.g., other federal departments and agencies, other levels of government, private sector, nongovernmental organizations) to maximize benefits?

At what stages (e.g., during the pilot project, during post-implementation evaluation) will issues relevant to OLMCs be reviewed to determine whether changes are required to accommodate their concerns?

How will the initiative be evaluated in terms of its impact on OLMCs?

Communications

What communication methods are most appropriate for reaching OLMCs (e.g., local community newspapers, radio, signs in government offices, local television)?

What key messages in promotional material pertaining to departmental programs and services address the concerns of OLMCs?

Is general material published by the department relevant for OLMCs and does it meet the department's commitment to Part VII of the Act?

Appendix 3: Webography

  • Broadband
  • Business Gateway
  • Canada Business Service Centres
  • Canada's SchoolNet
  • Canada–Ontario Infrastructure Program
  • Canada–Ontario Municipal Rural Infrastructure Fund
  • Canadian Consumer Information Gateway
  • Community Access Program
  • Computers for Schools
  • Consumer Connection
  • FedNor
  • Francommunautés virtuelles
  • Information Management/ Information Technology
  • Language Industry Program
  • Strategis
  • Student Connections
  • Youth Internship Program
  • CommunAction.ca
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