Today is a national "thanksgiving" holiday in Canada. The weather was perfect on Parliament Hill in Ottawa as marchers and supporters gathered in support of maintaining Canada's national public broadcaster and restoring adequate funding for its operation.

Today is a national "thanksgiving" holiday in Canada. The weather was perfect on Parliament Hill in Ottawa as marchers and supporters gathered in support of maintaining Canada's national public broadcaster and restoring adequate funding for its operation.
Photo Credit: Rufo Valencia

March to save Canada’s national public broadcaster

Share

After seven days of walking, a group of supporters of Canada’s public broadcaster, has reached its goal on Parliament Hill in the national capital, Ottawa.

The group calling itself “Tous Amis de Radio-Canada” is protesting the severe budgte cutbacks to the institution.  They, and the English equivalent “Friends of the CBC” say the funding reductions from the federal government have resulted in severe staff reductions in the past couple of years, along with an inability to properly fulfill its role.

Spokesman for the group
Spokesman for the group “Tous Amis de Radio-Canada” (Friends of Radio-Canada/CBC), Pierre Maisonneuve, speaks to a group of supporters in front of the Radio-Canada building in Montreal before the march to Ottawa began on October 6. Beside him are two Radio-Canada employees who made the 200 km march, which arrived today on Parliament Hill, Tania Gantcheva et Kamel Bouzeboudjen © Radio-Canada

The group of marchers and supporters stood on Parliament Hill today after walking about 200 km to arrive in the capital on this National thanksgiving holiday to deliver a message to politicians now in the final stretch of a close federal election campaign.

The group says that Radio-Canada/CBC has always been a vital national cultural institution, and critical source of Canadian viewpoints on world affairs.  It notes however, that role is increasingly more important in the light of a globalized digital world, where the voice of Canada as a producer, distributor, and aggregator of domestic and world news from a Canadian perspective, current affairs, and Canadian entertainment, is often swamped by the vastly bigger content from foreign sources.

a 2011 study (before further budget cuts) showed that Canada's national public broadcaster had the third lowest level of government funding of 18 developed nations with public broadcasting systems
a 2011 study (before further budget cuts) showed that Canada’s national public broadcaster had the third lowest level of government funding of 18 developed nations with public broadcasting systems. © CBC/Radio Canada

Instead of increasing funding for the broadcaster to adequately meet new and increasing responsibilities, the current government has severely cut back federal funding which provides some 80 percent of the broadcaster’s budget. The other 20 percent comes from advertising revenue on TV and internet. There are currently no adverts on radio.

The group of marchers with a couple of local supporters along the way, shown on October 9. A little rain didn't slow the marchers who covered between 30 - 40km a day during the march to Ottawa
The group of marchers with a couple of local supporters along the way, shown on October 9. A little rain didn’t slow the marchers who covered between 30 – 40km a day during the march to Ottawa © Tous Amis

The group of marchers left the Radio-Canada/CBC centre in downtown Montreal on October the 6th and today delivered its symbolic declaration of the minimum requirements for the broadcaster to adequately function.

Among other things, these call for an increase in funding from the currently (reduced) annual rate of $C29 per person in Canada to $C40.

It also says the President and Board of Directors should be non-partisan and appointed by an independent source and not the ruling government.

Melanie Jolie a federal Liberal candidate delivers a short speech. Receiving the Tous Amis group's declaration on behalf of the federal Liberal party is Stephane Dion (with suit and red tie), a Member of Parliament and former Liberal leader from 2006-2008
Melanie Jolie, a federal Liberal party candidate delivers a short speech, Receiving the Tous Amis group’s declaration on behalf of the federal Liberal party is Stephane Dion (with suit and red tie), a Member of Parliament and former Liberal leader from 2006-2008 © Rufo Valencia

The major opposition Liberal and New Democratic parties have both promised to restore funding to the broadcaster if elected, and a few were on hand to meet the group.

The current government has reduced the budget by some $115 million dollars which has resulted in over 1300 job positions being cut across the country,with news broadcasts reduced, along with production of domestic shows.

Without increased funding, current plans involve even more job losses and the sale of all Radio-Canada/CBC buildings across the country by 2020.

Tous Amis Facebook (French)

Friends of CBC Facebook (English)

Tous Amis website (French)

Friends of CBC website (English)

Globe and Mail article on CBC/Radio-Canada funding

Share
Categories: Arts and Entertainment, Economy, Politics, Society
Tags: , , , ,

Do you want to report an error or a typo? Click here!

@*@ Comments

Leave a Reply

Note: By submitting your comments, you acknowledge that Radio Canada International has the right to reproduce, broadcast and publicize those comments or any part thereof in any manner whatsoever. Radio Canada International does not endorse any of the views posted. Your comments will be pre-moderated and published if they meet netiquette guidelines.

Netiquette »

When you express your personal opinion in an online forum, you must be as courteous as if you were speaking with someone face-to-face. Insults and personal attacks will not be tolerated. To disagree with an opinion, an idea or an event is one thing, but to show disrespect for other people is quite another. Great minds don’t always think alike—and that’s precisely what makes online dialogue so interesting and valuable.

Netiquette is the set of rules of conduct governing how you should behave when communicating via the Internet. Before you post a message to a blog or forum, it’s important to read and understand these rules. Otherwise, you may be banned from posting.

  1. RCInet.ca’s online forums are not anonymous. Users must register, and give their full name and place of residence, which are displayed alongside each of their comments. RCInet.ca reserves the right not to publish comments if there is any doubt as to the identity of their author.
  2. Assuming the identity of another person with intent to mislead or cause harm is a serious infraction that may result in the offender being banned.
  3. RCInet.ca’s online forums are open to everyone, without regard to age, ethnic origin, religion, gender or sexual orientation.
  4. Comments that are defamatory, hateful, racist, xenophobic, sexist, or that disparage an ethnic origin, religious affiliation or age group will not be published.
  5. In online speak, writing in ALL CAPS is considered yelling, and may be interpreted as aggressive behaviour, which is unpleasant for the people reading. Any message containing one or more words in all caps (except for initialisms and acronyms) will be rejected, as will any message containing one or more words in bold, italic or underlined characters.
  6. Use of vulgar, obscene or objectionable language is prohibited. Forums are public places and your comments could offend some users. People who use inappropriate language will be banned.
  7. Mutual respect is essential among users. Insulting, threatening or harassing another user is prohibited. You can express your disagreement with an idea without attacking anyone.
  8. Exchanging arguments and opposing views is a key component of healthy debate, but it should not turn into a dialogue or private discussion between two users who address each other without regard for the other participants. Messages of this type will not be posted.
  9. Radio Canada International publishes contents in five languages. The language used in the forums has to be the same as the contents we publish or in one of the two official languages, English or French. The usage of other languages, with the exception of some words, is forbidden. Messages that are off-topic will not be published.
  10. Making repetitive posts disrupts the flow of discussions and will not be tolerated.
  11. Adding images or any other type of file to comments is forbidden. Including hyperlinks to other websites is allowed, as long as they comply with netiquette. Radio Canada International  is in no way responsible for the content of such sites, however.
  12. Copying and pasting text written by someone else, even if you credit the author, is unacceptable if that text makes up the majority of your comment.
  13. Posting any type of advertising or call to action, in any form, to Radio Canada International  forums is prohibited.
  14. All comments and other types of content are moderated before publication. Radio Canada International  reserves the right to refuse any comment for publication.
  15. Radio Canada International  reserves the right to close a forum at any time, without notice.
  16. Radio Canada International  reserves the right to amend this code of conduct (netiquette) at any time, without notice.
  17. By participating in its online forums, you allow Radio Canada International to publish your comments on the web for an indefinite time. This also implies that these messages will be indexed by Internet search engines.
  18. Radio Canada International has no obligation to remove your messages from the web if one day you request it. We invite you to carefully consider your comments and the consequences of their posting.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

 characters available

*

One comment on “March to save Canada’s national public broadcaster
  1. Avatar James Vandenblink says:

    The CBC has been a thorn in Harper’s side.
    He will surely pull the rug, if elected!
    We will be left with the likes of FOX.
    Where will we get our news then?