Three provincial government employees were recognized today, May 20, with Bonjour! Awards for Excellence in French-language Services.
Acadian Affairs Minister Michel Samson was joined by community partners and colleagues from the public service to make the presentations.
“Government has a vital role in developing and delivering important services in French for Acadian and francophone Nova Scotians,” said Mr.
Samson. “It takes an enormous amount of work to make programs and services accessible in French, and I want to congratulate the Bonjour! Award recipients for leading the effort.”
This year’s award recipients are:
— Marilyn Wallace, Excellence in Service Delivery to the Public
— Patricia Fricker-Bates, Excellence in Leadership
— Kelly Besler, Excellence in Program Development
Ms. Wallace, from Yarmouth, has been a porter at the Yarmouth Hospital for 25 years. It is important for patients to have someone who speaks their first language. Her warm, friendly and compassionate service in French has a calming affect with patients, which helps them during often difficult circumstances.
Ms. Fricker-Bates, from Sydney, who recently retired, was the French-language Services representative for Nova Scotia Legal Aid. She provided French-language support in many ways, including co-ordinating French-language training for legal aid staff across the province. Her leadership was instrumental in translating the Brydges After Hours Telephone Duty Counsel Manual.
Ms. Besler, from Halifax, is a child-protection co-ordinator at the Department of Community Services. She played a key role in making the Nova Scotia Child Abuse Registry fully available in French. Her determination led to people being able to request a search, make phone inquiries and receive all associated documentation in French.
Three former French-language co-ordinators were also recognized for enhancing French-language services:
— Joseph Muise, Department of Communities, Culture and Heritage
— Sylvie Lepine, Department of Energy
— Peter Woolaver, Department of Natural Resources
Nova Scotians can like Acadian Affairs on Facebook or follow the province in French on Twitter @GouvNE.