The word is the same in English and in French. The aircraft fly the same no matter where in Canada they are flown. And our members share a common passion for the freedom to fly.
COPA membership is quite broad, including all classes of pilots, all aviation interests and all areas of Canada. When compared with Transport Canada’s statistics on where pilots are located, the percentage of pilots in each province who are COPA members is about the same across the country, except for Quebec, where it is lower than anywhere else.
This is in part due to our French policy, which for years has been to include articles in French in our newspaper and on our web site when they are submitted in French and to list our notice for our Annual General Meeting in both languages.
Frankly, the volunteer submission of articles in French has been sparse and content is low.
At a recent COPA Board meeting it was decided to try to serve French speaking members and potential members better by translating key articles into French.
This can be an expensive proposition, especially if we want absolute accuracy in the translation, such as is done for government documents.
We wanted to find a balance between the technical accuracy of the translation and the desire to maximize the amount of translated material. Thankfully, we believe we have found a cost-effective solution in the services that will be provided by COPA member Claude Roy.
Some of you may recognize the name. Claude is President of the Canadian chapter of the International Challenger Owners Association. He has a long history of ultralight flying, including instructing hundreds of new pilots, leading expeditions of ultralight aircraft to far-off destinations (for ultralights) and demonstrating his uniquely painted “CF-18” Challenger at many air shows.
Recently retired from the military, Claude is well-versed in aviation matters, fully bilingual and he is willing to take on the task.
Starting in this issue, the President’s Column, Enforcement Action, Accident-Incident Summaries and the Newsletter will be published in both official languages.
Communicating with our members is one of the most important tasks at COPA. In a search for ways to serve our members better, it was recognized that we have been under-serving many French-speaking members.
Sure, many of them can speak English, but your Board believes that presenting key information in French will help improve communication and help increase our membership.
We will track the impact this revised policy has over the next year and revise it if necessary. Merci!