Centre for Research on Language and Culture

Centre for Research on Language and Culture

November 16, 2016 11:03 ET

Declaration on Indigenous Language Policy to Be Launched on November 18, 2016

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - Nov. 16, 2016) - A declaration responding to the 94 Calls to Action issued last December by the Truth and Reconciliation Commission is going to get special attention on November 18 at Glendon College, York University.

The Glendon Truth and Reconciliation Declaration on Canada's Indigenous Language Policy asks that Canada urgently commit to respond to the Commission's Calls for Indigenous Language rights, Indigenous Languages Act, and Office of an Indigenous Languages Commissioner.

Indigenous languages survived the residential school linguicide, but barely. All Indigenous languages are considered vulnerable to extinction. Of the 90 different Indigenous languages currently spoken across Canada, only 26 per cent are spoken by most children.

"It's time for our justified pride in official French-English bilingualism to be extended to encompass Indigenous languages, and the Declaration charts a course for this to happen," says Professor Ian Martin, one of the drafter of the Declaration.

The short version of the Declaration is available in English, French, Inuinnaqtun, Inuktitut, Cayuga and Ojibwe: http://www.glendon.yorku.ca/crlcc/events/indigenous-languages/

The declaration has been endorsed by such prominent organizations as the First People's Cultural Council of British Columbia, Nunavut Tunngavik Incorporated, and the Native Women Council of Ontario.

Press conference and launch information:

A press conference will take place on Friday, November 18, 2016 at 5:00 pm in room 219, Glendon Hall, Glendon Campus on 2275 Bayview Avenue, Toronto. The official launch of the Declaration will immediately follow at 5:45 pm along with the kickoff of the International Conference on Languages and Cultures in Contact, sponsored by Glendon's official research unit, the Centre for Research on Language and Culture Contact.

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