Factsheet 5 - Municipal and regional services

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Your language rights in New Brunswick
A summary of your rights under the Official Languages Act of New Brunswick
FACTSHEET 5 - Municipal and regional services
Municipal services: what you need to know

New Brunswick’s cities and eight other municipalities (see map) have language obligations. They must adopt and publish their by-laws and minutes of council proceedings in both official languages. They must also publish information and offer services in English and French, specifically:

  • public notices of a general nature, including tender notifications, advertisements, public education material and council agendas
  • websites
  • building and facility signs
  • traffic signs
  • responses to public inquiries, whether verbal, written or electronic, including reception services, complaints and reported incidents
  • invoices and responses to inquiries related to billing services
  • tickets, warnings and public notices, information and responses to inquiries related to by-law enforcement services
  • public notices, information and responses to inquiries related to:
    • recreational, leisure and cultural services
    • public works and utilities
    • public transit services
  • licences, licence applications and public notices, information and responses to inquiries related to municipal licensing services
  • inspection services, permits, permit applications and public notices, information and responses to inquiries related to building inspection services
  • public notices, information, educational programs and responses to inquiries related to crime prevention services and fire prevention services
  • public notices, information and responses to inquiries related to community planning and development services and services related to the administration of the Community Planning Act

Cities and other municipalities with language obligations

Answers to your questions

Since when do cities and some other municipalities have language obligations?

In 2002, the New Brunswick Legislative Assembly adopted a new official languages act. This act established language obligations for all cities, as well as for municipalities whose official language minority population represents at least 20% of its total population.

Regional services: what you need to know

Eight of the twelve Regional Service Commissions* (see map) must offer the following services and communications in both official languages:

  • All public notices of a general nature, tender notifications, advertisements and public education material, information on building and facility signs
  • Agendas and minutes of regular and special meetings of a regional service commission
  • Responses to public inquiries, whether verbal, written or electronic, including reception services, complaints and reported incidents
  • Invoices and responses to inquiries related to billing services

 

*Regional Service Commissions that have language obligations are

  • those serving an area with an official language minority population of at least 20% of the total population,
  • those whose area includes a city,
  • those whose area includes a municipality with an official language minority population representing at least 20% of its total population.

Eight of the twelve Regional Service Commissions that have language obligations:

Northwest Regional Service Commission (1)
Restigouche Regional Service Commission (2)
Chaleur Regional Service Commission (3)
Greater Miramichi Regional Service Commission (5)
Kent Regional Service Commission (6)
Southeast Regional Service Commission (7)
Fundy Regional Service Commission (9)
Regional Service Commission 11

If your rights are not respected...

There may be circumstances when public bodies do not respect your language rights. If that is the case, we invite you to contact us. Filing a complaint is easy, and the investigations we conduct help improve the quality of bilingual services. To learn more, simply click on this link.

How to contact us

Office of the Commissioner of Official Languages for New Brunswick
Telephone: 1-888-651-6444
Email: commissioner@officiallanguages.nb.ca
Website: officiallanguages.nb.ca
Address: Kings Place, 440 King Street, King Tower, Suite 646  Fredericton, NB  E3B 5H8