OTTAWA – After moving closure last week on debate, Conservatives are poised to ram their copyright reform bill through the House today, meaning tens of millions of dollars of lost income for artists, according to the NDP.
“This bill takes tens of millions of dollars from the pockets of artists, the people who keep our culture and heritage alive. It’s appalling,” said Official Opposition Heritage Critic, Pierre Nantel.
A carbon copy of the previous Conservative copyright reform bill – which was met with major protests – bill C-11 creates a loophole that will deny music creators $21 million in royalties.
“Essentially, the Conservative government is saying Canadian musicians make too much money, so the Heritage Minister is giving them a huge pay cut. Conservatives clearly don’t understand the challenges facing our artists, most of whom have difficulty making ends meet and count on these royalties to pay for their groceries,” said Nantel.
These changes will hurt artists and musicians from across the country, but the government is turning a blind eye to those affected.
“Conservatives have undermined the rights of artists, consumers and students," added NDP Privacy Critic Charlie Angus.
The NDP proposed several amendments to try and help fix the bill and find balance to ensure the artists are remunerated properly. “These amendments would have allowed artists to keep millions in lost royalties, but Conservatives rejected all our amendments.” said Nantel.
“Artists, citizens and experts have all told the government that this bill doesn’t get the job done. True to their form, Conservatives ignored everyone and moved full steam ahead on this flawed bill. The NDP strongly opposes this unbalanced bill,” concluded Angus.