2013–14 Integrated Action Plan
Message from the President of the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario)
This Official Languages Integrated Action Plan contains information about the activities we intend to undertake during the 2013–14 fiscal year.
The Plan shows an increased understanding of the requirements of section 41 with respect to executives and employees as well as the working relationships among the organizations that represent official language minority communities (OLMCs). We are targeting specific results to support the increased contribution of OLMCs to a flourishing southern Ontario economy. Furthermore, an accountability framework engages Agency executives and employees alike in the Action Plan's implementation.
I am therefore pleased to present this Action Plan to you, and I am confident that with the leadership of our Official Languages Champion, Jeff Moore, we will successfully accomplish the activities identified in the Plan.
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The FedDev Ontario Official Languages Integrated Action Plan has been developed to summarize the various activities the Agency intends to focus on during the 2013–14 period. It also serves as a tool for reporting on progress. This Plan continues to be aligned with the new Government of Canada Official Languages policy suite, The Roadmap for Canada's Official Languages 2013–18.
The report is structured into three main categories: 1) Introduction; 2) Official Languages Accountability Framework and Governance Structure at FedDev Ontario; and, 3) the FedDev Ontario Integrated Action Plan on Official Languages.
- Official Languages Accountability Framework and Governance Structure at FedDev Ontario
- Action Plan
The Official Languages Act (OLA) provides a legislative basis for official languages (OL) policies. Its purpose is to:
- Ensure respect for English and French languages and ensure equality of status and equal rights and privileges as to their use in federal institutions;
- Support the development of English and French linguistic minority communities; and
- Advance the equal status and use of English and French languages.
The OLA applies to federal institutions: offices, Crown Corporations and federal departments. Part IV also applies to third party delivery agents (funding agreements where services are provided or made available by another person or organization on the Government's behalf, e.g., bilingual Community Futures Development Corporations servicing designated bilingual regions).
The obligations under the OLA are described below:
- Part IV – Communications with and Services to the Public
- Any member of the public has the right to use English or French to communicate with federal institutions (head office, National Capital Region and offices where there is significant demand). Note that the Official Languages (Communications with and Services to the Public) Regulations set out the rules determining which offices must offer services in both official languages. For FedDev Ontario, all of its offices must ensure that services are available in both official languages.
- Part V – Language of Work
- Federal public servants have the right to work in the official language of their choice in designated regions. For the purposes of the OLA, designated regions include: the National Capital Region, New Brunswick, parts of Northern and Eastern Ontario, Montreal, the Eastern townships, and other parts of Quebec. As such, FedDev Ontario's Ottawa office is the only designated workplace where this would apply.
- Part VI – Participation of English-speaking and French-speaking Canadians
- The Government of Canada commits to ensuring that English- and French-speaking Canadians have equal opportunities for employment and advancement in federal institutions.
- Part VII – Advancement of English and French (section 41 of the OLA)
- The Government of Canada commits to supporting and assisting the development of official language minority communities (OLMCs). The intention is to enable these communities to thrive and enjoy the same benefits as the rest of the population.
- The OLA prescribes the need to consult OLMCs in determining their needs, within the context of policy and program development.
- It also sets out the duty of all federal institutions to take positive measures in order to fulfill these commitments.
2) Official Languages Accountability Framework and Governance Structure at FedDev Ontario
In 2011, FedDev Ontario implemented a policy framework for official languages. The framework is designed to mobilize resources within the Agency and reinforce the commitment to respecting official languages as one of its core values. The policy framework identified the following goals:
- Members of the public are informed of their right to communicate in either English or French, by actively offering services in both official languages;
- There is sufficient capacity in the Agency for communication in both official languages; and
- Agency programs and services satisfy the principle of substantive equalityFootnote 1 in English and French.
The policy reflects the necessity to meet the needs of OLMCs by entering into a dialogue with them, to understand their specific objectives and consider them when implementing Agency activities and services. It commits FedDev Ontario to undertaking positive measures to enhance these OLMCs.
An Accountability Framework was developed in 2011 and refined in subsequent years to lend greater definition to specific roles and responsibilities of all FedDev Ontario personnel. The Agency's governance structure is as follows:
Governance Structure FedDev Official Languages (OL)
Governance Structure FedDev Ontario Official Languages (OL)
OL Working Group
OL Coordinator (Chair of Working Group)
Representatives from each Branch
The President of FedDev Ontario, in his capacity as Deputy Head, is ultimately responsible for the Agency's compliance with the obligations set out under the OLA.
Reporting to the President, the OL Champion, as senior manager for the file at the executive level, is responsible for providing leadership in the development of policies and the implementation of measures to comply with the Agency's OL obligations.
The Executive Committee (not pictured above), chaired by the President, ensures that regularussions take place regarding the OL file. The OL Champion, who sits on Executive Committee is the link between senior management and the OL Working Group and provides it with strategic direction.
The OL Working Group's mandate is to provide advice and recommendations to the OL Champion in the context of the Agency's OL obligations. This group meets quarterly.
Chaired by the OL Coordinator, the Working Group develops and implements initiatives in support of the Agency's OL obligations;usses the most recent and relevant issues pertaining to the implementation of government OL policy at the Agency (including the complementary issues that link Parts IV and VII); and, provides direction on policy development.
The OL Accountability Framework also outlines the roles of all Agency personnel, including roles of branches and managers.
3) Action Plan
Developed through consultations between the OL Working Group, FedDev Ontario's Integrated Action Plan for Official Languages 2013–14 builds upon the previous year's OL activities, comprising themes pertaining to the Agency's OL obligations and actions. These themes, along with some examples of activities which fall under them, are:
- Developing 2013–14 OL Integrated Action Plan, promoting OL awareness within the Agency.
- Periodically confirming employees' ability to use their language of choice, reviewing the Active Offer toolkit for employees, implementing performance measurement for the Economic Development Initiative (EDI).
- Communications and Services to the Public
- Developing the Agency's ongoing capacity in terms of bilingual employees, ensuring that bilingual signage is available in all FedDev Ontario offices.
- Language of Work
- Updating the Agency Intranet OL page, ensuring that program delivery documents are available in both English and French.
- Human Resources Management
- Integrating OL needs into operational HR plans and staffing strategies, promoting, managing and assessing the part-time second language training program.
- Development of OLMCs
- Identifying success stories in OLMCs, integrating OL into overall Agency engagement strategy, implementation and delivery of EDI.
The Integrated Action Plan, attached, also identifies the lead branch, expected results and status of for each activity.
|1. Governance of Official Languages (OL)|
|1.1||Develop 2013–14 Action Plan addressing Official Languages Act (OLA) obligations.||OL Coordinator||Define activities for the application of the OLA.||Underway.|
|1.2||Hold OL Working Group meetings (at least twice a year).||OL Coordinator||The Agency is aware and able to meet its OLA obligations.||OL WG met in Spring 2013.|
|1.3||Promote OL Awareness within Agency.||OL Champion||The Agency is aware and able to meet its OLA obligations.||Ongoing.|
|1.4||Review FedDev Ontario 2011 OL policy statement to ensure that governance framework adequately incorporates Part IV, V, VI and VII of the OLA and supports this plan. Communicate the plan to all Agency employees.||
||The Agency is better able to meet all of its OLA obligations.||Not yet begun.|
|1.5||Implement awareness sessions regarding OLA obligations and/or training sessions.||
||All employees understand the stategies, and impact of the CALDECHFootnote a decision in the context of the implementation of the OLA.||Not yet begun.|
|2. Monitoring of Official Languages|
|2.1||Periodically confirm whether employees (in regions designated as bilingual for language-of-work purposes) can use their language of choice in the workplace.||Management||Employees in regions designated as bilingual for language of work purposes can work in the language of their choice.||PSES 2011 results were used for this purpose most recently and this process will continue in the future.|
|2.2||Ensure that performance agreements of executives and managers contain clear performance objectives related to Parts IV, V, VI and VII (s.41) of the OLA.||All Agency executives||Executives prioritize OLA obligations.||Ongoing.|
|2.3||Review the Active Offer toolkit provided to Agency employees.||
||Active Offer is understood and used in interactions with public.||Ongoing.|
|2.4||Ongoing evaluation of the Agency's OL Action Plan, including assessment of the extent official languages obligations are implemented in the Agency (e.g., services offered by CFDCs located in designated regions).||
||Review of External Compliance with OLA Part IV to be completed in 2013–14.|
|3. Communications with and Services to the Public in both Official Languages|
|3.1||Review the evaluation grid for all Agency programs and services.||
||Agency programs and services address the needs of OLMCs.||Pending. Review planned as part of 6.1.1 and 2013 OL Regulations Re-Application.|
|3.2||Develop the Agency's ongoing capacity in terms of bilingual employees.||Managers with support from HR||Enhanced capacity to deliver services in both official languages.||FedDev Ontario OL Training Guidelines came into effect in February 2012. Recent review of bilingual positions within the Agency was presented to SHRC in May 2013.|
|3.3||Review Agency information on BurolisFootnote b to ensure that information remains current.||OL Coordinator||Burolis information is accurate, and public is kept informed of capacity to offer services in both official languages at various Agency offices.||Last update was completed in October 2013.|
|3.4||Ensure bilingual signage is available in FedDev Ontario offices.||Communications||Public is aware that services are available in the official language of choice.||Signage is available in both official languages in all Agency offices. Ongoing updates made as required.|
|4. Language of Work|
|4.1||Provide additional tools for bilingual employees (software, keyboard, etc.).||
||Employees are equipped to work in the language of their choice.||Complete. All employees are able to access tools on Intranet. Ongoing updates made as required.|
|4.2||Update Agency intranet OL page to provide a virtual library and resources in both official languages.||
||Staff have easy access to tools that will enhance effective communication in both official languages.||Ongoing. New virtual library with OL tools launched by Champion in September 2012.|
|4.3||Provide additional reference documents (physical library) in both official languages.||
||Staff have easy access to tools that will enhance effective communication in both official languages.||Resource materials have been provided to each FedDev office e.g., French-English dictionaries; French grammar guides, bilingual vocabulary for Governance, Public Policy and Administration.|
|4.4||Ensure that working documents for program delivery are available in both English and French (i.e., Project Submission Forms, etc.).||OL Working Group||Documents are available in the employee's official language of choice.||Not yet begun.|
|5. Human Resources Management|
|5.1||Integrate OL needs into operational HR plans and staffing strategies.||Management (senior) with support from HR||The Agency is in a position to meet its OLA obligations.||HR Plan initiated in fall 2012 as part of operational planning exercise. In May 2013, SHRC received updates of the Agency's current bilingual position capacity information as part of strategic HR planning meeting. Management also provided input to the HR planning documents with respect to OL.|
|5.2||Promote, manage and assess employees' development related to part-time second language learning.||
||Language learning opportunities are made available and communicated to employees, and are being effectively utilized.||
The FedDev Ontario Official Languages Learning Strategy was launched in October 2013.
The Strategy consists of four components:
|6. Development of Official Language Minority Communities and promotion of English and French in Canadian Society|
|6.1 Development of OLMCs, and sharing of ideas and information with OLMCs|
|6.1.1||Ongoing adaptation of Agency programs and services as needed in light of the analysis grid provided by the Office of the Chief Human Resources Officer, following the Supreme Court of Canada's decision on Caldech/Desrochers.||
||The Agency's programs reflect the principle of substantive equality.||Ongoing.|
|6.1.2||Identify success stories in OLMCs.||
||Ongoing development and communication of OLMC success stories.||Ongoing. EDI success stories identified and vignettes realized e.g., "fonds de microcredit pour les entreprises francophones" with Fondation franco-ontarienne in 2012. Future vignettes to be identified.|
|6.1.3||Integrate OL strategy into overall Agency engagement strategy.||
||OLMCs form part of the Agency's engagement strategy.||OL Roundtable with OLMC stakeholders completed in November 2012. Additional Roundtables held in May 2013 on Agency renewal and AMF; OL organizations participated in Ottawa session.|
|6.1.4||Continue to monitor take-up of programs by OLMCs to ensure that all programs and services offered by FedDev Ontario are accessible to OLMCs.||BICD||All FedDev Ontario programs and services are accessible and available to OLMCs.||Ongoing.|
|6.2 Awareness (In-house activities)|
|6.2.1||Promote special days such as Linguistic Duality Day, Journée internationale de la Francophonie, Rendez-vous de la Francophonie and Jour des Franco-Ontariens.||
||Agency employees are aware of unique events that promote linguistic duality.||Ongoing. Announcements made for Franco-Ontarian day, Linguistic Duality Day in Fall 2012. Comms plan for 2013–14 under development.|
|6.3 Coordination and Liaison|
|6.3.1||Participate in the national network of resource persons responsible for the implementation of section 41 of the OLA.||OL Coordinator||Cooperation and coordination with other federal organizations on official languages matters.||Ongoing. Last meeting attended on May 29, 2013.|
|6.3.2||Participate in OL governance committees (for example, the Ontario OL Interdepartmental Network, Committee of Assistance Deputy Ministers on OL, etc.).||
||Cooperation and coordination with other federal organizations on official languages matters.||Ongoing.|
|6.4 Roadmap for Canada's Official Languages – Economic Development Initiative|
|6.4.1||Delivery of EDI.||BICD||Encourage innovation, diversification, and development of OLMCs consistent with Agency priorities and objectives.||As part of the renewed Roadmap, FedDev will continue to deliver EDI for 2013–18 and ongoing.|
|6.4.2||Participate in the EDI implementation committee with Industry Canada and Regional Development Agencies.||BICD||Sharing of best practices and reporting on initiatives/projects undertaken under the EDI.||Last meeting attended in May 2013 to develop the EDI Performance Measurement Strategy.|
|6.4.3||Participate in Roadmap renewalussions and process led by Canadian Heritage.||
||Ensure that the "renewal of the Roadmap" takes FedDev Ontario's views into consideration.||FedDev Ontario officials were involved in the development of policy and program-related documents for the Roadmap.|
|6.4.4||Continue to implement performance measurement and monitoring plan for the Economic Development Initiative (EDI).||
EDI Logic Model and Performance Measurement Strategy to be updated and implemented in FY 2013–14.
EDI will be evaluated as part of The Roadmap for Canada's Official Languages 2013–18, led by PCH. A national approach is currently being developed by Industry Canada and regional development agencies.
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