Talk:Brussels-Halle-Vilvoorde

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Neutral (or not)[edit]

This article has been written with a remarkably neutral spirit. Congratulations to the author(s). Very funny to note that there still is no article on the French wikipedia about Bruxelles-Hal-Vilvorde, only a stub at http://fr.wikinations.be/Arrondissement_de_Bruxelles-Hal-Vilvorde ... --Pylambert 22:32, 28 July 2005 (UTC) I can see if I can try have friends translate this in French But does anyone know which are the communes that englobe Brussels-Halle-Vilvoorde? this artical ia extreamly bias --Gufo (talk) 11:44, 7 June 2009 (UTC) this article is extreamly bias

This article (the way it appears in August 2011) reflects mainly the Flemish POV (Point Of View). It contains misleading and sometimes false statements which are too numerous to be corrected all at once. Among numerous bias, several sections of this article imply/allege that the Constitutional Court deemed that there is some discrimination between French-speakers in Halle-Vilvoorde (who can vote for parties and undertake/undergo judicial proceedings of/in their own language) and Dutch-speakers in Wallonia (who can not do the same). The Constitutional Court never suggested such a thing. It is Flemish political parties’ POV that the electoral & judicial status of the BHV district is discrminatory. French-speaking political parties’ POV is that this situation results from the compromise reached in 1970 on the linguistic border, after that the geographical position of this border (which encloses a very large number of French-speakers in the Dutch-speaking area it demarcated) was voted in 1962 and 1963 by a single majority of Flemish members in Parliament against the minority formed by their French-speaking counterparts. As for the Constitutional Court, it did not call into question: the electoral possibilities/rights/arrondissement as far as Senate and European elections are concerned; nor the judicial possibilities/rights/arrondissement, nor present rights that would be specific to the French-speaking population in BHV. It did not deem “BHV unconstitutional” but pinpointed (in 2003) some unconstitutionality that stemmed from the new electoral law voted in 2002 (which made all electoral districts for the Chamber election match the boundaries of provinces, except for the province of Flemish Brabant). The constitutional problem that stemmed from the 2002 law relates to the BHV electoral district only (not the judicial district), and concerns exclusively the election of the Chamber (not the Senate nor European elections). The Court deemed that a solution should be found to address the differences it pinpointed between candidates who run for the Chamber in the province of Flemish Brabant and candidates running for the Chamber in all other Belgian provinces. Constitutionalists agree that one (among many) possible constitutional solution to solve the problem pinpointed by the Court consists in abrogating the 2002-law which modified the electoral district boundaries. While not politically acceptable (especially for Flemish parties), this would be a constitutional solution and would affect neither the present rights of French-speakers in Halle-Vilvoorde, nor those of Dutch-speakers in Walloon Brabant. (This supports the preceding statement that the problem pinpointed by the Court does not concern these rights). Aramidae (talk) 11:16, 31 August 2011 (UTC)
Aramidae, I think this article is fairly neutral for being such a contentious issue, with of course some work needed on several points. Your point has validity - there are several constitutionally valid solutions to BHV: a split is one, a return to the pre-2002 districts is another. There are equally valid reasons for saying that this article has a francophone POV. The removal of the schools part - this is an important part which should be investigated first. The part on the scrapping of the votes is not yet neutral. I am sure other people can find other points for both language sides. Let's work on them constructively. Morgengave (talk) 11:31, 31 August 2011 (UTC)
Yes, Morgengave, let's work on that constructively indeed. I appreciate that you agree on the point of several constitutionally valid solutions. Regarding the school part, please read my comment supported by a reference in Discussion on changes to the article in August 2011 (B). Regarding Belgian expatriates casting their vote in BHV district, please read my answer to you in Discussion on changes to the article in August 2011 (A) (last bullet point).
The article is still far from neutral. Several sections of this article (starting with the introduction) still allegedly imply that the constitutional problem relates to voting rights. This should be moved to the "Flemish Point of View" section or at least be immediately followed by a sentence making clear that this is not what the Constitutional Court stated. Likewise, the introduction still states that Constitutional Court “judged that the BHV-district is unconstitutional”. This is a false statement that must be either removed or corrected.
It is a regrettable that the Flemish POV interferes within the section "Francophone point of view" in highlighting (without proper referencing) the POV of a very small number of French-speaking individuals (whose proportion in the mentioned association should be confirmed/referenced), unanimously contradicted by the four largest French-speaking political parties.
However, like you, I am sure that other people will find other points for both language sides and help with suggestions for parts on which we may continue to disagree.
Aramidae (talk) 14:09, 31 August 2011 (UTC)

Image[edit]

The text of this article is good, but the image "Map of Brussels-Halle-Vilvoorde electoral district showing all municipalities with highlighted areas showing percentage of French-speaking residents" is not correct. 193.53.37.12 08:37, 17 August 2005 (UTC)

You're right: the author should have mentioned that it comes from a francophone party's site (Front démocratique des Francophones) and must be taken as the view of one side of the conflict. Let's add it. --Pylambert 08:46, 17 August 2005 (UTC)
Hello, this is the author here. I'm glad you found the article as impartial as possible - that was certainly my aim. I completely agree as regards the noting that the map does indeed come from a francophone website. The fact that the map represents statistical information had led me to conclude that it was indisputible. I realise I may have been a little hasty. Thanks for your help.

Some questions about facts & opinions[edit]

Dear, being a student from Canada, staying in Belgium for a semester only, I found quite some factual information (both on Wikipedia as elsewhere) that is squarely incompatibele with information I found here. Could you please clarify.

  1. The articles says that six of these municipalities in Halle-Vilvorde had populations who were majority Francophone. This is only supported by one French-speaking political party (FDF). I did not find any independant sources for this. Even worse, most states that the six municipalities referred to only had between 30 and 50% French-speakers. What are your sources?
  2. Some sources (Flemish) state that Waterloo and La Hulpe had between 30 - 50% Flemings, but were not included under the facilities arrangement, contrary to the legal provisions for that.
  3. This article suggests that the linguistic facilities were instituted in order to "provide facilities for francophone residents". However, the legal texts I found give a very different picture: they were intended for ALL linguistic minority groups (above 30% of local population), including German speakers in Malmedy, and Dutch-speakers in many Walloon municipalities. This presentation as if facilities were to benefit "francophone residents" appears highly biased and francophile.
  4. This articles pretends that "In Flanders in particular there has been a steady rise of the extreme-right since that time". However, the major extreme-right party in Flanders ('Vlaams Blok', now 'Vlaams belang') was only founded +/- 20 years after the instauration of linguistic facilities. On the other hand, the nationalistic French-speaking party ('FDF') was founded much earlier. Why only talks about Flemish extremism? And what about german-speakers? Are they happy?
  5. This articles also fails to note that French-speakers in Flemish municipalities with linguistic facilities and the Flemings in Walloon with municipalities with linguistic facilities enjoy LESS political rights then those in the unilingual Flemish municipalities from Halle-Vilvoorde. As a result, certain French-speakers enjoy extra-territorial voting rights that the inhabitants from the municipalities with linguistic facilities do not enjoy. This means certain french-speakers have rights that Flemings never can enjoy! Isn't this ethnic discrimination? Thus racism?
  6. The two 'main compromise solutions' proposed in this article do not remediate about this ethnic (or linguistic) discrimination! Why is this overlooked?
  7. Even with a constitutional amendement on dual electoral disctricts, the first 'compromise' does still breach the equality provisions in both constitution and European and universal declarations and conventions on human rights.
  8. the articles states that 'Spirit' would have been the only Flemish party opposed to the latest compromise proposals from Belgian prime minister verhofstadt. However, as far as I found out, many other flemish parties were against: CD&V, Vlaams-Blok (now Vlaams Belang), and N-VA. Groen! appears to be not pro, not contrary. That leaves only VLD and SP.A in favour. is the current presentation in the article not biased?
  9. Even within the VLD and SP.A, several politicians have expressed their opposition to the 'compromise' (among othters Leo peeters and several other local majors in the SP.A and De Decker and Bouckaert in the VLD).

Moreover, this articles states that "A deal was struck, though it served largely Flemish interests.", however, I did not find any factual avidence for the latter claim.

Given all these remarks, this article appears rather biased and partisan, non-scientific.

Yours sincerely, Jason

Thanks for these questions, im a Flamish student and this shows to me that this discussion in Flanders is always been overloaded with emotions and populistic remarks. If you can make a more neutral article about this then please do so. I found your comments more interesting than the article

That's pretty strange English for a Canadian called Jason. The fact that the six municipalities have a francophone majority is supported by their voting record, isn't it? 41.241.126.185 (talk) 22:29, 14 May 2010 (UTC)

I'm afraid I have to agree with the last contributor that it appears highly unlikely that the comments above purporting to come from a Canadian student by the name of Jason were in fact written either by an English-speaking Canadian or indeed by a French-speaking Canadian. There are far too many gross grammatical, stylistic and spelling mistakes for this to have been written by an English speaker, and equally the stylistic devices and expressions used are not those of a French speaker writing in English either. This leads one to suspect that the author, in seeking to disguise his/her origins, may in fact have an altogether different agenda. At all events, his/her comments should not be taken at face value.

Yours ever,

Mickey-bear — Preceding unsigned comment added by Mickeybear (talkcontribs) 00:26, 13 July 2012 (UTC)

French-speaking parties and BHV[edit]

I noticed that the following sentence has been added to this article:

French-speaking parties act that splitting BHV would be in facts as denying the french-speaking minority in HV the right to democracy, as they would not be able to vote at federal level for any party representing them.

I believe that this is not accurate as there is no reason why a French-speaking party can't submit electoral lists in Flemish constituencies.--Ganchelkas 13:42, 25 June 2007 (UTC)

Indeed. The sentence should be reverted as it's simply not the truth. The Francophone parties can enter lists if they want too, just as the VB entered a list in Walloon Brabant this year. If they stay separated however, those parties will not gain a seat in Flemish-Brabant. On the other hand, a recent study has shown that if BHV is split, the Flemish parties will lose up to two seats in Brussels proper. An other option the francophone parties could seek is to enter a unifying list of all the francophone parties (Union des Francophones) as is already done during the regional elections. That combination will yield them at least one seat (as is now the case in the Flemish Parliament) or perhaps even two. -- fdewaele, 25 june 2007, 16:32.
I agree, and therefore I deleted that paragraph. Even though the paragraph only said that French speakers 'claim' that they would lose the right to vote for a party that represents them, and even though I believe it is true that they make this claim, I think this claim should only be included in the body if the article if the article goes on to qualify their claim by the fact that they would not lose the right to submit their own electoral lists. In the end, I preferred to delete it altogether, since the article didn't site any source. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 81.241.72.113 (talk) 23:34, 10 November 2007 (UTC)


This Article appears seriously biased on an NPOV basis, as the Francophone position is misrepresented, imho, and a warning should be added to the header: I have refered it to info-en-q@wikimedia.org as I am too close to the activity in the real world to be a fair judge. It is also seriously out of date. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Fernadel (talkcontribs) 14:08, 11 November 2007 (UTC)
Given that the article changed since November 2007, references were added (unreferenced tag October 2006), is it still needed to maintain these tags ? I do not see why this article is biased, I do not know in what way the Francophone position is misrepresented, and I certainly do not know why the article is out of date. One User, Fernadel (Fernandel is a cognomen for a more established user who does not care to use his normal identity for certain purposes.) made these claims nine months ago. It was the only contribution Fernadel ever made (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Special:Contributions/Fernadel). Kvdh (talk) 17:46, 7 September 2008 (UTC)

The article still states "If the BHV electoral district would be split in half, these citizens would lose the right to vote in their own municipality." This is untrue as they still can vote.78.129.50.165 (talk)

NPOV dispute[edit]

Since November 11, 2007, Fernadel failed to initiate the NPOV debate, and failed to explain the disputed NPOV of the article. In fact, user Fernadel did never do anything other than putting the disputed NPOV tag. Can all editors please state if they agree or disagree with the NPOV of the article. Otherwise it seems appropriate to remove the tag. Kvdh (talk) 18:08, 7 September 2008 (UTC)

I see no reason to keep the tag. Ceedjee (talk) 18:24, 7 September 2008 (UTC)
I remove the flags Kvdh (talk) 23:32, 8 September 2008 (UTC)

See also[edit]

The current system enable French speakers in H-V to vote from candidates at B. This is one of the reason why some want BHV to be cut. For some commentators, all that arise there is a form of nationalism based on ethnical (or cultural) consideration. Ceedjee (talk) 18:24, 7 September 2008 (UTC)

I understand this point of view, however I do not think linking to Gerrymandering and/or Ethnic nationalism is a neutral association. Gerrymandering is a form of redistricting in which electoral district or constituency boundaries are manipulated for electoral advantage. Redistricting in the case of BHV appears to be one of the possible solutions to solve a constitutional problem. Whatever specific ethnicity is involved, ethnic nationalism always includes some element of descent from previous generations.. The Flemish people appear to be satisfied with a solution where people living in the territory concerned make efforts to integrate by using the local language, at least in formal contacts with the municipalities involved. There is no element of descent involved whatsoever.Kvdh (talk) 19:07, 7 September 2008 (UTC)
Hi,
A "see also" link doens't have to be neutral.
Please, don't mix "NPoV" with "neutrality" in the sense of "in-between".
BHV events can be seen as some sort of Gerrymandering and Ethnic nationalism. And they are seen as such in the French speaksing side of the country by some extremists.
See also enables to go and see what it is all about. Ceedjee (talk) 05:44, 9 September 2008 (UTC)
@Ceedjee: Gerrymandering is a form of redistricting for electoral advantage. If BHV would be split, Flemings would loose seats in Brussels, and francophones would loose seats in Halle-Vilvoorde. The split of the electoral arrondissement is therefore not a form of Gerrymandering: there are disadvantages for both parties. Moreover, Gerrymandering is more often used for redistricting where the boundaries between electoral districts look strange. Halle-Vilvoorde is one coherent region. JefVG (talk) 18:22, 18 September 2008 (UTC)
Hi JefVG,
so, according to your reasonning, the "non-splitting" is a form of electoral advantage and according to your tone in the second part of the sentence, with Brussels, BHV is not a "coherent region".
Ceedjee (talk) 06:45, 19 September 2008 (UTC)
The "non-splitting" is definitely an electoral advantage for French speakers in the Halle-Vilvoorde area. There's a discrepancy between the amount of votes for French speaking parties in federal and European elections (73.000 votes in 2003 for French speaking parties) and in regional, i.e. Flemish elections (36.000 votes for UF). French speaking parties thus have an advantage at federal elections, because they raise more votes in the Halle-Vilvoorde area. The reason for this difference is that well-known French speaking politicians living in Brussels (e.g. Laurette Onkelinx) do not participate in regional Flemish elections, but in the elections for the Capital Region. See this article(in Dutch)
You misinterpreted the second part of my argument. It was about the strange borders used in Gerrymandering. If you look at the borders of the 4th Congressional District in Illinois on the Gerrymandering-page, then you'll know what I meant. BHV with Brussels is a coherent, geographic region, but splitting the district would create two new coherent geographic regions. Splitting BHV is IMO not gerrymandering, because the borders of other administrative divisions (judicial cantons and linguistic borders, for example) are still respected, and not changed. JefVG (talk) 13:59, 19 September 2008 (UTC)
For many Vlamingen, HV is coherent, BHV is not.
So, there is no problem with Gerrymandering. Ceedjee (talk) 18:26, 19 September 2008 (UTC)
Gerrymandering is about changing borders for electoral advantage for one party. Splitting BHV is not about that at all, it's about an unconstitutional situation which has to be dissolved. I can live with the See also-link to Ethnic nationalism as both Flemings and French speakers are somewhat radicalised on this matter, but a possible split of BHV is definitely NOT gerrymandering. For many Slovaks, Slovakia is coherent and Czechoslovakia was not. So the split of Czechoslovakia was - according to your reasoning - gerrymandering? JefVG (talk) 19:58, 19 September 2008 (UTC)
Hi,
Please, read WP:SEEALSO
Nobody says "splitting BHV" is "Gerrymandering", else it should be in the core of the article.
You gave yourself what justifies Gerrymandering is in the "See also" section. Both topics are linked.
Ceedjee (talk) 12:38, 21 September 2008 (UTC)

I cite the Lay-out page: whether a link belongs in the "See also" section is ultimately a matter of editorial judgment and common sense. As there is no agreement on the See also-link for Gerrymandering, I think there is some kind of bias on the inclusion of the link. Maybe this case should be settled before the team of Moderators.
Why not include the link to Gerrymandering in the section "French-speakers point of view"? The readers of the BHV article know then at least that it's a francophone extremist view to consider the split of BHV as gerrymandering. (As you stated in an earlier comment) JefVG (talk) 07:46, 22 September 2008 (UTC)

I don't have time to answer.
I will come back in a few days.
Rgds, Ceedjee (talk) 11:52, 22 September 2008 (UTC)
I see 2 editors who think the links are not really appropriate, and one with another point of view. I mean, I think it is AS relevant to include Racism and Discrimination as well. Even leaving Gerrymandering aside, where is the descent element in Whatever specific ethnicity is involved, ethnic nationalism always includes some element of descent from previous generations. to argue for keeping Ethnic nationalism in this article. Perhaps, we should call for external advise and give this issue to moderators or a wider group of editors. Kvdh (talk) 21:12, 25 September 2008 (UTC)
As no further opinions on the matter appear, I suggest removing the three last references in the "See also" section Kvdh (talk) 19:46, 29 September 2008 (UTC)
Agreed! JefVG (talk) 10:37, 30 September 2008 (UTC)

NPOV[edit]

I have a problem with the sentence "French speakers see the legitimacy of their rights challenged by a culture that seems to define itself partly in its rejection of Walloon people (out of a historical frustration)". This is not the case IMHO. Even if it were the case, this would probably require a citation. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 84.193.227.213 (talk) 22:26, 5 December 2009 (UTC)

I do agree. Moreover, I think no citations can be found as it is not true. There is a huge difference between French speakers and Walloon people. Especially in the part of Flanders surrounding Brussels the French speakers are people who fled the Brussels area to come to Flanders, and those are not Walloon people. Kvdh (talk) 13:05, 29 May 2010 (UTC)


Venice Commission ambiguous[edit]

Contrary to what certain French-speaking nationalists think, it is far from obvious what advise the Venice Commission gives. Certain documents from this informal bopdy suggest that French-speakes in flanders should be considered as a national minority. Others suggest that those French-speakers doen't astisfy 2 of the 4 criteria put forward by the Venice Commission. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 62.235.179.164 (talk) 09:48, 3 May 2010 (UTC)

I believe that this should be corrected too. Kvdh (talk) 13:05, 29 May 2010 (UTC)

POV[edit]

"Another, more obvious and probably more democratic solution would be that the electoral disctricts respect the constitutional boundaries of the language areas." represents the Flemish POV only and is not sourced. Vb 11:06, 3 May 2010 (UTC)

"more obvious and probably more democratic" should be removed Kvdh (talk) 13:05, 29 May 2010 (UTC)

Kraainem, Linkebeek and Wezembeek-Oppem[edit]

I don't think it's in the article that these three municipalities have asked to be included in Brussels if BHV is split: http://elections2010.fdf.be/spip.php?article18 Santori (talk) 19:56, 13 May 2010 (UTC)

Rhode-Saint-Genèse[edit]

Rhode-Saint-Genèse has also voted in favour of becoming part of Brussels: http://www.lalibre.be/actu/belgique/article/586189/rhode-saint-genese-motion-en-faveur-d-un-rattachement-a-bruxelles.html?utm_source=twitterfeed&utm_medium=twitter 41.241.69.175 (talk) 13:58, 1 June 2010 (UTC)

Re-organisation of the article[edit]

Hello, I made a draft at User:SPQRobin/BHV to re-structure, re-organise, update and improve the article. It's certainly not perfect (some sections still need improvement/references) but imho it's better than the current one. Some things I did:

  • Short (and hopefully clear) explanation in the introduction what the problem is. I think that is what most are looking for if they wanted to read the article. At the end of the introduction I wrote "The history, problems and possible solutions are explained in-depth below."
  • Different structure: I tried to make it a bit more chronologically: first history, then the new electoral areas of 2003 (what started most of the ), explanation of current structure, points of view, solutions, and at least all the negotiations and attempts to split BHV.
  • Better information about history: the section "The creation of the district" was just about the municipalities with linguistic facilities. I shortened it and added other important reforms that made BHV how it is now.
  • A lot of content improvements still need to be done, however... (especially the controversial sections)

If there isn't much opposition, I will replace the current article with my version. I hope that way I can help the people who want to know what BHV is. Any comments/problems about the draft are welcome! Thanks, SPQRobin (talk) 15:51, 18 June 2010 (UTC)

I've put the new version on the page.. SPQRobin (talk) 15:39, 22 June 2010 (UTC)

Issues[edit]

removed original research from issues, there is no original research, un verified claims are covered by thelack of references--DerekvG (talk) 22:58, 20 June 2010 (UTC)

POV[edit]

"Among others, it did not rule on the fact that some French-speakers now enjoy de facto rights that Flemings don't..." is the Flemish POV. For the Francophones there is no discrimination for two reasons. On the one hand a French speaker (just as a Fleming) moving to another arrodissement cannot either vote for candidates of the arrondissement he is coming from. And on the other hand if a Fleming (just as a French speaker) move within BHV, he can still vote for a Flemish candidates even if he moves within a municipality with French as the majority language. Vb 13:44, 23 June 2010 (UTC) —Preceding unsigned comment added by 89.0.158.157 (talk)

Sorry, I didn't see this section immediately. Anyway, You are mixing causes with consequences. *Because* the arrondissement includes a monolingual Dutch-speaking area, and the French-speakers can vote for their parties, that is (*consequently*) a de facto right that the Flemish de facto do not have (in all arrondissement with a monolingual French-speaking area, Flemish can nowhere vote for their parties). If you still not agree, feel free to propose a more neutral sentence. Regards, SPQRobin (talk) 20:16, 23 June 2010 (UTC)
No! Flemings can move to Ixelles and still vote for Flemish politicians though Ixelles is a French-speaking municipality. The point of view you present is not a fact but a Flemish point of view. You will never find any Francophone thinking like this. Francophones simply don't understand the problem. A Fleming moving from Gent to Leuven cannot vote for a Politician of Gent. This is the principle of electoral arrondissements. It is no matter whether an arrondissement is bilingual or not. You have to write your sentence with a clear statement that this is a point of view (e.g. with "according to"). Vb 10:42, 28 June 2010 (UTC) —Preceding unsigned comment added by 93.193.80.124 (talk)
Elsene is a bilingual municipality. Fact is that the majority has become French-speaking, but it is still officially bilingual. Btw, you say that Francophones don't understand the problem.. Well, then we can't discuss. You first have to understand the problem. And as I said, if you still not agree, feel free to propose a more neutral sentence. (I didn't write this sentence, look at the history.) I am not going to discuss further, because you will not be able to convince me and I will not be able to convince you. "Point final". SPQRobin (talk) 12:26, 28 June 2010 (UTC)
"Flemings can move to Ixelles and still vote for Flemish politicians though Ixelles is a French-speaking municipality" Ixelles/Elsene is officially bilingual "A Fleming moving from Gent to Leuven cannot vote for a Politician of Gent" but an inhabitant moving from brussels to HV can still vote for a politician in brussels

Discussion on changes to the article in August 2011 (A)[edit]

Hi Aramidae, please take care that you keep some crucial things in -- otherwise you smuggle a POV in the article:

  • the results from the language census in the early 20th century were/are disputed by the Flemish - this should be kept in the article as it's an important part of the story
  • can you reference that the shift to French - as said the extent is disputed by the Flemish - lead to a demand in services in French? If not, I would remove this part
  • I would remove the " " in the sentence "minority" in Fourons. While I understand what you are trying to say, the way you say it, makes it look POV. Perhaps just say French-speaking population. A note at the bottom of the page that says that the town now has a Dutch-speaking majority could be useful as well.
  • The preservation of the judicial and voting possibilities in Halle-Vilvoorde were not preserved deliberately from the point of view of the Flemish parties - this is a crucial difference in views between both sides. As such, this cannot be written down as a deliberate part of the compromise. Same applies to what you have written lower in the article - the part where you say that this was a part of the 1970 agreement.
  • The preservation of these judicial and voting possibilities are not put in the Constitution, but in law. This is a crucial difference - if they were in the constitution, they could not have been deemed unconstitutional by the Constitutional Court. Also, because they are written in law, they can be changed by a simple majority in parliament.
  • the part of the scrapping of foreign voters is POV and I recommend that some efforts be made to balance it - e.g., include the Flemish rationale for doing so.

Morgengave (talk) 10:24, 29 August 2011 (UTC)

Hi Morgengave. Thank you for your comments. Allow me to answer them one by one:
  • About disputed language censuses: I mentioned it (hopefully clearly) in the section “dynamic system” with the sentence: “These results were disputed by Flemish politicians who questioned the survey methodology.”
  • About shift from Dutch to French leading to demand in French services: I am not sure about the part/sentence you are referring to (Maybe an older version that someone has already modified). At any rate, while the extent to which families have shifted from Dutch to French may be disputed, it seems reasonable to state that on both sides, the linguistic minority wishes/demands (and is by law entiteled to) services (such as schools, administrative documents, notifications, etc.) in their own language.
  • I have followed your recommendation about French-speaking population versus "minority" in Fourons/Voeren. Regarding your suggestion for a bottom note, the context in which I mentioned the proportion of French-speakers in Fourons/Voeren (i.e. linguistic census in 1947) implies "among Belgians" whereas the present Dutch-speaking majority in Fourons (61% voting for Dutch-speaking parties in local elections in 2006) relies on the 24% Dutch nationals who recently settled in the municipality and have (as any European citizen) a right to vote at local elections. Instead of a bottom note, I have now linked the name of the municipality with the Voeren/Fourons article so that people can access more information/discussion about this municipality.
  • About rights not preserved deliberately from the Flemish POV: It seems that someone has already taken your comment into consideration and modified that part of the article while highlighting this crucial (indeed) difference in views between both sides.
  • About preservation of possibilities not in the Constitution, but in law and "deemed unconstitutional by the Constitutional Court": I agree on the first part of your statement (and someone seems to have modified the article accordingly). However, to my knowledge, the Court has not deemed these possibilities unconstitutional all together as you imply (and as this article implies too often). To the best of my knowledge, the Court has not questioned electoral possibilities/rights/arrondissement as far as Senate and European elections are concerned; and the Court has not questioned any judicial possibilities/rights/arrondissement, nor any right that French-speakers enjoy. The Court requested that a solution is found to address the differences it pinpointed between candidates who run for the Chamber in the province of Flemish Brabant and candidates running for the Chamber in all other Belgian provinces (a difference stemming from the 2002-law which left the province of Flemish Brabant divided into two electoral arrondissements unlike all other provinces).
  • About "scrapping of voters" and balancing statements: Before I added information on Belgian expatriates (not foreign) voting in BHV (via the Embassy or a proxy), only the Flemish nationalist party (NVA)’s POV was expressed on this matter in the article, with the sentence: “Belgians who live abroad may choose in which electoral arrondissement they are registered. The majority of the French-speakers abroad do so in BHV, according to N-VA.”). The referenced information I have added precisely aims at balancing this NVA's POV statement.
Aramidae (talk) 01:07, 31 August 2011 (UTC)

Discussion on changes to the article in August 2011 (B)[edit]

Under the title Legal and political considerations in the section Point of view, the following paragraph which had been added by user Rudi Dierick on 14 June 2009 at 08:08 was not referenced, harmful to the French-language Community of Belgium and based on a false statement (evidence provided in the discussion below) and therefore removed in accordance with Wikipedia guidelines:

“Flemings also point to the fact that they already go much further in the actual recognition of minority rights then the French-speakers do. E.g.: Flemish government funds French-speaking schools in municipalities with language facilities in the Flemish Region (as the constitution prescribes for) of around 10 M€ per year. Contrasting sharply with that, the French-Speaking Community and the Walloon Regional government have never accepted that Dutch-speaking schools were established (as the constitution prescribes for) in Walloon municipalities with language facilities in the Walloon Region. As a result, there is no funding at all for Dutch-speaking schools in Wallonia.

The French-language Community (FC) does subsidise Dutch-speaking school(s) in Wallonia in every municipality where the 1963-law criterion is met (i.e. at least 16 families residing in the municipality asking for such a school): e.g. in Mouscron. In addition, the Dutch-language Community (DC) was allowed to open a school (DC funded) where the criterion was not met (less than 16 families asked for it): in Comines. In both cases, the schools are inspected by Dutch-speaking school-inspectors having proper knowledge of the Dutch programmes. In contrast, while the DC also respect the 1963-law in Flanders, it does not allow the FC to open a school (even FC funded) outside the 1963-law criterion; and in 2009, it decided to impose Dutch-speaking school-inspectors (whose knowledge of French programmes are questionable) until the Constitutional Court ruled against this Flemish statutory order and corrected the situation (in October 2010). Aramidae (talk) 05:00, 31 August 2011 (UTC)

I though there were no Dutch-speaking schools in Wallonia - to the frustration of the Flemish side of the country. Was the school in Comines - Warneton not the only one (only primary)? And I think it's being subsidized by the Flemish government, because the Walloon refrains from doing so. I think this is what the above part refers to. It would be good if this were investigated and clearly referenced. Morgengave (talk) 10:06, 31 August 2011 (UTC)
Here is a reliable reference [1] which confirms the following: There is a Dutch-speaking school in Mouscron (84 pupils), which is funded by the government of the French-language Community. It is the only municipality with facilities for Dutch-speakers where 16 (or more) families have asked for a Dutch-speaking school (which is, by law, the criteria for opening a school in the other language in a municipality with facilities, both in Flanders and in Wallonia). In Comines - Warneton, since there were not enough families asking for it, the French-speaking Community did not open/fund such a school but, at the same time (and even though the legal criteria was not met) it did not prevent the Dutch-language Community to open a private school with their own funds. This private school has/had 32 pupils (in 2007) and is (indeed) only primary (+ kindergarten).
For information, there were also 60 schools offering Language immersion in Dutch funded by the French-language community in 2005 [2]. Their number seems to have kept increasing since: this article in the Belgian news [3] mentions 6 new schools with Language immersion in Dutch opening in September 2011 (but unfortunately does not mention the present total number of such schools).
In contrast, to my knowledge, private French-speaking schools that do not meet the legal criteria are not tolerated in Flanders (the only private French-speaking school departing from this rule is the French -from France- school of Antwerp, authorised on the basis of an international agreement similar to the agreement relating to the English school in Tervuren); and the number of schools offering Language immersion in French is known to be extremely low in Flanders.
Flemings often express surprise about the low number of Dutch-speakers living to the south of the language border (and hence the low number of Dutch-speaking schools, etc.); but in French-speakers’ Point Of View (POV) this situation precisely results from (ever the same claim ;-)) what happened in 1962 and 1963 when the majority of Flemish members in Parliament decided (against the French-speaking minority) the geographical position of this language border -too far to the south- and thus created a situation whereby a very large number of French-speakers found/find themselves to the north of this border whereas Dutch-speakers were/are very few to the south of it. Aramidae (talk) 15:59, 1 September 2011 (UTC)

References[edit]

  1. ^ "La Wallonie a aussi ses écoles à facilités" (in French). Belga, La Libre Belgique. 2007-12-26. Retrieved 2011-08-31. 
  2. ^ "L'incroyable triomphe de l'immersion" (in French). Belga, La Libre Belgique. 28/07/2005. Retrieved 01/09/2011.  Check date values in: |date=, |accessdate= (help)
  3. ^ "21 nouvelles écoles s'ouvrent à l'immersion linguistique" (in French). Belga, La Libre Belgique. 31/08/2011. Retrieved 01/09/2011.  Check date values in: |date=, |accessdate= (help)

New gov't[edit]

Supposedly the major breakthrough that allowed the new government to be formed was an agreement to split up BHV. Are the details of how this would work public yet? --Jfruh (talk) 02:31, 8 December 2011 (UTC)

Map of provinces / electoral areas[edit]

This map is in Dutch; we should try to find one in English. 12.239.145.114 (talk) 19:32, 23 August 2012 (UTC)