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CMG’s Open Letter to the President of CBC and to the Chairman of the Board

May 23, 2014

Rémi Racine
Chair, CBC Board of Directors

Hubert T. Lacroix President CEO CBC/Radio-Canada

Dear Mr. Racine and Mr. Lacroix,

In recent weeks, we’ve all been disappointed to see yet another round of major cuts at CBC. We wanted to inform you that our members are troubled by the lack of transparency with which the cuts have been handled in some areas. Since 2009, more than 2,100 jobs and dozens of significant programs have been eliminated leaving CBC/Radio-Canada far from the vibrant public service it was intended to be.

If our public broadcaster is going to survive, it needs strong vocal leadership now from the Board of Directors. We need you to be the people that will champion the interests of the public broadcaster. We urge you to press the government to change the funding model and secure increased funding equal to half the world average for public broadcasters in order to ensure we have a fully functioning public broadcaster Canadians can be proud of and before any more damage is done and our public broadcaster is reduced to irrelevance.

The Guild believes the time has come to be clear and straightforward with Canadians and CBC employees about the current state and future of the national public broadcaster. It is very troubling to see CBC/Radio-Canada being dismantled before our very eyes and ears.

We suggest leveling with Canadians about the ongoing cuts to CBC and their impact on the service we can deliver. Producing an audit of the positions and programming that have been lost over the last twenty years would demonstrate what Canadians have lost in great programming over the decades. Tell Canadians what services and which communities are threatened as further changes are being contemplated.

The Guild is calling on the government to immediately reverse the $115 million Deficit Reduction Action Plan (DRAP) cuts that have come into full effect this year. We urge you and other Board directors to publicly support this call.

Public broadcasting is not just another business or player in the media industry as some would have us believe. It was created to serve Canadians, the real stakeholders, our democracy and this country.

We need more of it, not less.

Carmel Smyth, National President CMG
Marc-Philippe Laurin, CBC Branch President


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