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CMG advocates for quality news, diversity at CBC license renewal hearing

Canadian Media Guild (CMG) representatives appeared before the CRTC on January 26 as part of the CBC license renewal hearing.

CMG President, Carmel Smyth, CBC Branch President, Kim Trynacity and Francophone Affairs Director, Dominique Gauthier, described the negative impact of years of financial cuts to local news services across the country. The lack of resources has resulted in questionable use of repeats and repurposed programming among other things.

The CMG used its appearance to emphasize the importance of maintaining hours of original programming on radio and television, as the majority of Canadians still rely on these platforms. We urged the CRTC not to give CBC the ability to move all television news services online in order to meet its licence requirements.

The union also urged the Commission to require the CBC to improve its record for hiring and retaining diverse media workers in all job categories, including senior management. And there was a call to review programming and journalistic standards through an inclusion and diversity lens.

Key recommendations:

– at a minimum, CBC/Radio-Canada be required to maintain current levels of service on radio and television, and to invest more in local news, underserved communities, as well as in-house documentary production and long-form journalism. The union also asked for the renewal of mandatory distribution of CBCNN and ICI RDI.

– that CBC/Radio-Canada be obliged to improve reporting on hiring, retention, career development and promotions for equity-seeking groups, including among senior management

– that CBC/Radio-Canada also improve diverse content of programming on all platforms

– that CBC/Radio-Canada drop branded content from its platforms, as the Corporation has not provided assurances on how it will ensure the credibility of CBC as a trusted news media source not suffer with this service

You can read our full submission here.

CMG President, Carmel Smyth
CBC Branch President, Kim Trynacity
Director of Branch Francophone Affairs, Dominique Gauthier

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