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Guild urges government to give CBC recommendations a green light

TORONTO. The Canadian Media Guild strongly supports the all-party Heritage Committee’s recommendations to strengthen CBC/Radio-Canada. The CMG urges the government and parliament to move quickly to implement the committee’s recommendations, and particularly those that call for enhanced funding.

The committee’s report, released today, has given new hope for the future of Canada’s public broadcaster and comes at a time when CBC programs are facing budget pressures and need a shot in the arm in order to deliver what Canadians expect and deserve.

“This feels like the first real moment of optimism for the CBC in recent memory,” says Lise Lareau, national president of the Canadian Media Guild. “An all-party committee has said yes to the CBC, yes to expanded radio coverage, yes to more CBC programming, including on the internet, and yes to more money to properly fund these important initiatives. Let’s get on with it.”

The parliamentary report also recommends that CBC put together a plan to ensure that Canadians continue to be able to watch their public broadcaster for free, over the air, after the transition to digital TV in 2011.

“The committee members understand that the CBC plays a unique role in this country,” says Marc-Philippe Laurin, president of the union’s CBC branch. “CBC’s role has never been more important in an age of continuous private media mergers. The recommendations will help the CBC serve Canadians better.”

“We hope that all the necessary players come together immediately to adopt the recommendations and move forward,” Laurin adds.

The report echoes many of the proposals the CMG made when it appeared before the committee last spring, including an increase of per capita funding from the government.

For more information, contact the Guild (info@cmg.ca) at 416-591-5333 or 1-800-465-4149.

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