Fate of new Quebec language law unclear with one party opposing key elements

QUEBEC – Quebec’s bid to beef up the province’s language law appears on shaky ground with one opposition party saying it will reject key elements of the legislation.

The leader of the Coalition for Quebec’s Future says he opposes plans to make French the mandatory language in the workplace for companies with between 25 and 49 employees.

Francois Legault told a news conference in Quebec City this morning it is important to strike a balance between promoting French and respecting the rights of Anglophones.

The Coalition has 19 seats in the 125-member national assembly and effectively holds the balance of power.

The governing Parti Quebecois has 54 seats and the Liberals, who have said they will vote against the language legislation, have 50. The two others are held by the left-wing sovereigntist Quebec solidaire.

The PQ made protecting French a key issue during last year’s election campaign, saying the language was threatened, particularly in Montreal and western Quebec.