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November 3rd, 2020

NDP: Broadcasting Act misses the mark, government must act to protect local cultural and media sector

OTTAWA – The NDP’s Critic and Deputy Critic for Canadian Heritage, Alexandre Boulerice (Rosemont – La Petit-Patrie) and Heather McPherson (Edmonton Strathcona), are disappointed with the government’s new bill to amend the Broadcasting Act as it doesn’t go far enough to protect the local cultural and media sector, or Canadian jobs in the sector.

“When the Liberals introduce a bill, you can expect to be disappointed. But there are always limits! The Broadcasting Act needed to be modernized and the Minister of Heritage had the opportunity to ensure that all players participate in the production of Quebec and Canadian cultural content. But the Minister missed the mark,” added Boulerice. “Not only are Internet providers not included, but also Facebook and Google's advertising revenues are protected. It is unacceptable that the Liberals are giving them such a gift.”

The NDP will continue to pressure the government to take immediate action to get the web giants to contribute to local production and fair sharing of revenues with the local media.

“The government had promised to make web giants pay their fair share but are delaying by passing the responsibility on to regulators, while the crisis that our media is experiencing is immediate,” said McPherson. “Many media outlets have already had to close their doors and the worst is yet to come for these workers. It is worrying for the future of reliable and quality information that people need. We’re calling on the government to act now to secure the future of Canadian cultural and media sector.”