09/26/2012 10:35 EDT | Updated 11/26/2012 05:12 EST

Leader of People's Alliance of New Brunswick says duality too expensive

FREDERICTON - The leader of the People's Alliance of New Brunswick says he wants to open the debate on the duality of services in New Brunswick.

Kris Austin says he supports bilingualism but the province cannot afford separate French and English systems for education and health.

He says given the province's financial state, New Brunswick has to end duality before services become no longer available.

New Brunswick is Canada's only officially bilingual province, and the right to distinct French and English institutions such as schools is included in the Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

Austin says too many qualified people are being denied employment in New Brunswick because they are unilingual.

The People's Alliance of New Brunswick became a political party in 2010 but does not have any members elected to the legislature.