Quebec Can Modify Part of the Canadian Constitution Unilaterally: Trudeau

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says Quebec can unilaterally modify part of the Canadian Constitution.

The province’s proposed language law reform, introduced last week, seeks to change part of the Constitution to affirm that Quebec is a nation and that its official language is French.

Trudeau told reporters today the federal government’s initial analysis has concluded provinces can modify the part of the Constitution that applies specifically to them.


He says Quebec can alter the Constitution to emphasize that it is a nation and that its official language is French — two things that have already been recognized by the federal government.

Trudeau says he’s concerned about protecting French in Quebec and in the rest of Canada, and that the Constitution will continue to protect linguistic minorities, particularly anglophones in Quebec.

The language law reform also includes tougher sign laws and stronger language requirements for schools, governments and businesses, including those in federally regulated industries.


Prime Minister Justin Trudeau holds a press conference in Ottawa on Tuesday, May 18, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick

This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 18, 2021.


This story was produced with the financial assistance of the Facebook and Canadian Press News Fellowship.

The Canadian Press

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  • One Comment

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    1. Ron H Fichtner

      How does Junior even know if this is legal? Just because he says so? If Junior is stupid enough to allow any group within Canada to call themselves a “nation” and allow that “nation” to set an exclusive language then he is obviously hell bent to destroy this great country. This is the nation of Canada, period. Canada is a bi-lingual country, period. If that doesn’t work for anyone living in this country they should just leave, period. No exceptions. If Junior allows this to go forward, he should expect 9 other Provinces and Territories and every distinct segment of society to pass similar “laws” that are English only, or Cantonese only, or Punjabi only, etc. etc. How utterly ridiculous. Stand up for Canada or leave.

      May 18, 2021 at 3:16 PM

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