Government cuts to public science that put at risk Canadians’ health, safety and the environment are not supported by the government's scientists, nor the public, says PIPSC union president Debi Daviau.
Photo Credit: Professional Institute of the Public Service of Canada (PIPSC)

Scientists alarmed, Canadians concerned, by government cutbacks of science

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Nearly three quarters of Canadians believe public health, safety and the environment should be the top priority of government scientific activity and 91 per cent of federal government scientists believe cuts to government science budgets will have a detrimental impact on the government’s ability to serve the public, according to a new study called “Vanishing Science” released Thursday (February 6).

“Vanishing Science: The Disappearance of Public Interest Science” is the result of surveys of scientists and Canadians to gauge reaction to federal government cuts to research projects, libraries and other research facilities.

The study was released by the Professional Institute of the Public Service of Canada (PIPSC), the union that represents many of the federal scientists, and focused on science conducted in the public interest, such as public health, public safety and the protection of the environment.

RCI’s Wojtek Gwiazda spoke to Peter Bleyer, PIPSC’s Communications and Policy Section Head about the report, the commitment and concern of federal scientists, and why this report was written.

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More information:
PIPSC press release – Harper Government Cuts to Science Overwhelmingly Detrimental and Out of Sync with Public’s Priorities, Say Surveys – here
Vanishing Science: The Disappearance of Public Interest Science full report (pdf) – here

twitter.com/wojtekgwiazda

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3 comments on “Scientists alarmed, Canadians concerned, by government cutbacks of science
  1. Avatar Trevor says:

    I want to warn Canada about Stephen Harper. As an American, I have unfortunately met conservative Canadians who are in love with the U.S. without realizing that in fact most people here are extremely poor and getting poorer and life is not very healthy or good here for vast majority – due to the irreparable political consequences of our past leaders who enacted policies similar to what Stephen Harper is enacting in Canada. The only difference I see is that Stephen Harper is even more extreme than conservatives were in the U.S., is even more extreme than the American tea party movement is today. When I listen to Canadian media discuss what’s happening with Harper, I am shocked and dismayed at the politeness and calmness of the reports because it gives Canadians the false sense that what’s going on is not as extreme as it is. I also think Canadians have a false sense of security about their ability to recover from Stephen Harper. The policies he’s enacted will have long-term negative consequences to Canada. Even if the opposition wins strongly in the next election, future governments will not be able to reverse many if not most of these consequences. That has been our experience in the U.S. You cannot easily recover from the destruction of civilization, it takes years and years and years to build up. Too many Canadians seem passive in the face of the destruction of the Canadian way. As a media outlet, you need to provide voice to more activists and louder, more urgent voices. All this calm talk is not living up to your journalistic duties – because it implies that things are calm and normal, when in fact Canadian civilization is being dismantled, the hard work built up by your grandparents. And it will take a generation of young people with less opportunity and lower paying jobs having to build that up again. It’s so sad.
    Thank you.
    – A Concerned American and Friend of Canada.

  2. Avatar Sue Robertson says:

    How can we work to stop these willful, shameless CPC’s from their intent to destroy our legacies of Canadian knowledge and history before their collaboration with wealth and ignorance renders us toxic and homeless?

  3. Avatar dave dykeman says:

    this anti-science regime must be recognized and publicized as such to cement purpose in changing government NOW in hearts of minds of citizens