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Abstract

In July 1974, the legislature of Quebec passed an Official Language Act, declaring French to be the sole official language of the province. Although the majority of Quebec's population speaks French, there is a significant minority of English-speaking Canadians living in the province who will be affected. This Act, commonly known as Bill 22, will also affect businesses, particularly American corporations with subsidiaries operating in Quebec. Bill 22 has sparked a controversy in Canada with respect to both its constitutionality and the power of the Province of Quebec to pass such legislation.

Since no cases thus far have tested Bill 22, it is the purpose of this comment to survey some of the conflicting issues of its constitutionality together with the basic structure of the Act. The possible effects on two of the specific areas covered by the Bill, education and labor and business, will also be considered.

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