Governance and Relationship Building: The power of stories

NWLF Conference September 2022

In March of this year, BC public library trustees and library directors were asked for their input and direction for developing a series of workshops across the province on building and strengthening BC public library relationships with local municipal, regional, and First Nation governments.

Based on that input, and specifically the input from the NWLF region, BCLTA is pleased to join the NWLF Conference with the workshop, Governance and Relationship Building: The power of stories

Saturday, September 17, 2022

10AM to 3PM (lunch noon to 1PM)

This workshop is for everyone (trustees, staff, library directors) interested in strengthening their library’s relationship with local municipal, regional, and First Nation governments. No matter where you or your library are in relationship building, this conversation and activity-based workshop is an opportunity for sharing insights, practical tips, and for taking your relationship building further.

Carolina de Ryk, Prince Rupert Public Library Trustee and host of CBC’s Daybreak North will join us to talk about the CBC storytelling project Ga amhaw wil ‘nat’ata Ts’mysen – Sharing Northcoast Indigenous Stories that took place in partnership with the Prince Rupert Public Library and the importance of storytelling to bring people together.

In this workshop we will:

  • Explore relationship building as a governance and leadership responsibility through the lens of role clarity (board, library director, and staff responsibilities) and trust (fiduciary responsibility, transparency, and accountability)
  • Examine the difference between and the alignment of governance relationships and operational partnerships
  • Describe the desired impact of strengthening these relationships
  • Build confidence through storytelling and story-listening where everyone has a role (creators, listeners, and tellers)
  • Explore the evidence for and the growing governance practice of trust, empathy, and shared understanding as the super glue of governance relationship building
  • Share experiences of what is working and what could be different
  • Develop a map, specific to your library’s needs, for next steps in relationship building with local municipal, regional, and First Nation governments

In our discussions and activities, we will build on strengths, discover common ground, and celebrate differences. Every public library is part of a unique community and has its own stories. Come join us with yours.

BCLTA gratefully acknowledges the financial support of the Province of British Columbia through the Ministry of Municipal Affairs.

 

Email from Minister Osborne, June 1, 2022

Via email, June 1, 2022
Dear Mike,
 
I received a copy of your recent letter to Minister Cullen, and I wanted to reach out to say thank you! When I was appointed Minister of Municipal Affairs, I was so delighted to learn that public libraries were part of my portfolio. I really appreciate all your hard work for BCLTA and library trustees, and in turn for public libraries – it has made such a tremendous difference in people’s lives. I think the pandemic in particular has helped us all learn just how important libraries are to community fabric.
 
While I’m sad I no longer work with the library branch in Municipal Affairs and all the amazing library partners across BC, I know that Minister Cullen really enjoys this portfolio, and I remain proud to be a part of a government that celebrates and supports BC’s public libraries.
 
All my best,
 
Josie Osborne

Laura Vilness: BCLTA Board Nomination

I am an avid reader and passionate about public libraries. They are public spaces that provide all people with access to entertainment, ideas, and information which enrich their lives in a safe and comfortable place. I have a great desire to continue to be a voice for public libraries through the BCLTA. I appreciate the connections and training that are available for Library Trustees and will continue to support this through my local Board and, hopefully, through the BCLTA Board.

I am a retired educator who spent my career working as a teacher, consultant and administrator in Saskatchewan school divisions. My husband and I moved to Pender Island in 2018 and one of my first forays into the community was to join the Pender Island Public Library as a volunteer and then as a Board member. I have been on the Pender Island Public Library Board for 2 ½ years and have been in the Chair position for 1 ½ of those years and greatly enjoy the work. I have extensive experience, primarily in education, with policy governance and leadership. Much of my life has been focused on public education and involvement in the library is an extension of that work.

I would be honoured to serve as a Director on the Board of the BCLTA.

Response: Office of the Prime Minister (May 26, 2021)

Dear Mr. Gagel:

On behalf of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, I would like to acknowledge receipt of your correspondence of May 13, 2021, regarding Bill C-10: An Act to amend the Broadcasting Act and to make consequential amendments to other Acts.

Thank you for writing to the Prime Minister. You may be assured that your comments, offered on behalf of the British Columbia Library Trustees Association, have been carefully reviewed.

In your correspondence, you raise an issue that falls more directly within the portfolio of the Honourable Steven Guilbeault, Minister of Canadian Heritage. I have therefore taken the liberty of forwarding your correspondence to Minister Guilbeault for his information and consideration.

Once again, thank you for writing to the Prime Minister.

K. Bentsen
Executive Correspondence Officer / Agente de correspondance
Executive Correspondence Services / Services de la correspondance
de la haute direction

Response: Office of Jagmeet Singh, M.P. (Burnaby South) Leader, Canada’s New Democrats (June 24, 2021)

Thank you for writing and sharing your views on Bill C-10 (An Act to amend the Broadcasting Act and to make related and consequential amendments to other Acts).

We wanted to see the Broadcasting Act updated to ensure that tech giants like Google and Facebook be required to pay their fair share and be on a level playing field with Canadian companies. But, like many, we were disappointed with the initial wording of Bill C-10 and its failure to address the concerns of Canadians about how user-generated content would be affected. Yet, despite lengthy bickering between the Liberals and Conservatives, New Democrats worked to improve the bill and supported amendments to protect individual rights, stand up to the tech giants, and ensure the arts community gets a fairer deal. Ultimately, because these changes exempt individuals from the Act and protect Canadian culture and heritage sector, we supported Bill C-10.

What’s more, the powers of the CRTC are limited to broadcasters only – the legislation specifically excludes individuals from regulation and users who upload content to social media services are not subject to the Act.

NDP MP Charlie Angus offers his update on Bill C-10 below.

Again, we appreciate hearing from you.

Best regards,

Office of Jagmeet Singh, M.P. (Burnaby South)

Leader, Canada’s New Democrats


June 22, 2021

Friends,

Contrary to what the Conservatives are telling you, Justin Trudeau is not creeping your Facebook page, and he is not going to silence your right to free speech. So let’s deconstruct what Bill C-10 is actually about.

The bill was supposed to update legislation to ensure that the tech giants like Google and Facebook finally began to pay their fair share. This is an issue that has become a focus for countries around the world.

The point person for this bill was Minister Steven Guilbeault, who blew it from the get-go. He turned this legislation into a four-alarm dumpster fire. The legislation was poorly constructed, and Guilbeault couldn’t explain to Canadians how “user-generated content” played into the government’s strategy.

The Conservatives jumped on this and claimed this bill was an attack on free speech. But, on the other hand, both the Liberals and Bloc declared they would vote for the bill as it was, and they had the votes to pass this poorly constructed bill into legislation.

The New Democrats took the position that rather than let a problematic bill get rubber-stamped, we would focus on amendments to ensure that people’s rights were not affected. We worked hard at committee to close the Liberals’ loopholes and provided fixes to the problems in this bill.We voted in favour of a second Charter review to ensure that Broadcasting Act does not infringe on personal freedom of expression – and that review was done. In addition, we supported a motion to force the Ministers of Justice and Heritage to appear at committee to address concerns over freedom of expression.

We proposed that the committee meet more often and for longer hours to get the job done. We voted against closing the debate and even put forward a motion to extend debate through the summer months.

The government rejected these proposals.We have fought to protect freedom of expression AND ensure that the web giants are on an even playing field with Canadian companies. Canadian media and content are under extreme pressure, and the web giants have a competitive advantage right now. This unbalanced playing field must end, and it will end with this legislation.

Thanks to the amendments, C-10 is now clear – it protects individual rights to free expression on all platforms. This bill limits the CRTC powers to broadcasters, and the legislation specifically excludes individuals from regulation. Users who upload content to social media services are not subject to the Act.In fact, the bill now contains four sections specifically exempting individuals from the Act. In addition, and vitally, this bill will protect Canadian culture and heritage sector.

With C-10, the Liberals created a political dumpster fire. The Conservatives threw gasoline on the fire. New Democrats stayed focused on three key goals – standing up to the tech giants, protecting individual rights online and ensuring that the Canadian arts community will get a better deal from the massive profits being made by companies like Google and Facebook.

We’re in this together.

Charlie Angus, M.P. (Timmins—James Bay)

Further Email Responses to BCLTA: Listed in order of most recently received


August 6, 2021

Peter Julian, Member of Parliament

New Westminster-Burnaby 

NDP House Leader | NDP Finance Critic

Dear neighbour, 

Thank you for contacting me regarding the changes to the Broadcasting Act.  I appreciate you taking the time to write to me. Thank you for your patience in my response. I hope that you and your family are healthy and safe as we come through the pandemic. 

Defending the basic principle of freedom of speech deserves our full attention and vigilance. The NDP has always defended this fundamental principle and continues to do so during the work to improve this bill.  

We also know that people are increasingly concerned about the power of the web giants, who do not pay their fair share and do not play by the same rules as Canadian companies. Since the law originally came into effect, the CRTC has never regulated online platforms that compete unfairly with our local businesses. As a result of this unfair competition, our cultural businesses have less revenue and the impact of COVID on these pillars of our cultural sovereignty puts thousands of workers in a precarious situation.  

The debate around C-10 has undoubtedly raised concerns for Canadians. Throughout the process the priorities of the NDP has been the defense of freedom of expression and to level the playing field between web giants and the Canadian cultural sector.  

However, the Trudeau government put forward a flawed bill and failed to manage the issue properly. Faced with criticism, they chose to blame the opposition parties and minimize the concerns of the public. The Liberals have not done what is needed to reassure people, instead they’ve used tactics of dividing and opposing experts instead of working with all stakeholders to find a solution. 

The NDP has opted for a constructive approach by adopting amendments to improve the bill and proposing concrete solutions to the crisis created by the Liberal’s mismanagement and the Conservatives’ political games. We have supported a motion asking for an updated Charter review by the Justice Department, in addition to forcing the Ministers of Justice and Heritage to appear at Committee as well as hearing from few other experts. Those additional steps have shown that freedom of expression must be respected by the CRTC. 

It is also important to mention that the current Broadcasting Act mentions on three occasions that “This Act shall be construed and applied in a manner that is consistent with the freedom of expression.” (Article 2 (3); Article 35 (2); Article 46 (5)). To ensure we were reassuring the concerns of many Canadians, we have also supported a sub-amendment that was ensuring that for any new regulations they “shall be construed and applied in a manner that is consistent with the freedom of expression enjoyed by users of social media services provided by online undertakings.” The NDP also supported amendments that clarified that the CRTC doesn’t have jurisdiction on users of social media and there are other amendments forthcoming that will reinforce this, but unfortunately, because of the Conservatives’ obstructionism, we are not getting to these important amendments.   

Since day one, the goal of this legislation has been to make sure that web giants like YouTube and Netflix are following the same rules as Canadian companies and are contributing to Canadian content from which they profit quite a lot. It never has been about controlling what regular people can post or cannot post and it should never be about this. The NDP has clearly chosen a constructive approach to ensure that both the principles of free speech are defended and that the web giants pay their fair share. However, the Conservatives are engaging in systematic obstruction and the Liberals are also delaying the process of passing the bill by failing to listen to and take seriously the concerns of experts and the public. 

To make things worse, the Liberals decided to impose a motion that limits the study of amendments. We voted against that motion because we believe it isn’t a good solution while we’re still studying thirty important amendments. For this reason, the NDP has proposed a motion that would extend the Committee’s work over the summer to ensure that the work is done, that freedom of expression is protected and that the needs of the cultural sector are adequately addressed. While we are confident that the bill does not violate freedom of expression, the NDP will also be proposing that the government refer the final bill to the Supreme Court for its advice. This will guarantee Canadians who have remaining concerns, that their rights are respected. 

A lot has changed in the last 30 years since the Broadcasting Act was updated and it is time that we stop multi-billion-dollar corporations making huge profits on the back of our artists. These web giants don’t pay tax in Canada, they don’t contribute to funding for Canadian culture and they don’t adequately compensate artists and musicians for their work. We must fix that now. 

The federal NDP’s priority is always to ensure that there is a level playing field between the web giants and Canadian businesses. The NDP will always stand up for freedom of expression and we will ensure that as this bill moves forward, the government comes up with a solid plan to defend it in the context of the new legislation. 

Thank you again for taking the time to write to me and for your advocacy on this important issue. Please don’t hesitate to be in touch with my office if you have any other concerns. 

My team remains available by email or telephone : 604-775-5707 peter.julian.c1@parl.gc.ca I would like to share with you this resource guide  that may help you access useful information and services at this time. The Constituency Office hours for walk-ins and appointments are Tuesdays to Fridays from 10AM to 4PM. 

Stay healthy and safe in these challenging times, In solidarity,

Peter Julian, Member of Parliament

New Westminster-Burnaby 

NDP House Leader | NDP Finance Critic

New Democratic Party | Nouveau Parti démocratique  

I acknowledge that I work on the unceded traditional territory of the Algonquin, Haudenosaunee and Anishinabek peoples.

Je reconnaît que je travaille sur le territoire non-cédé des nations Algonquine, Haudenosaunee et Anishinabek. 

New Westminster is located on the unceded and traditional territory of the Halq’eméylem speaking Coast Salish peoples. This includes the nations of the Qayqayt, qʼʷa:n̓ƛʼən̓ (Kwantlen), Katzie, kʷikʷəƛw̓əm (Kwikwetlem), xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), Stó:lō, sc̓əwaθn məsteyəxʷ (Tsawwassen), and Tsleil-Waututh. Burnaby is located on the ancestral and unceded homelands of the hən̓q̓əmin̓əm̓ and Sḵwx̱wú7mesh speaking peoples as well as all Coast Salish peoples.  

______________________________________________________
(TEL) 613.992.4214 | (CELL) 613.222.4074 | FAX) 613.947.9500 UFCW | TUAC P Help save paper – do you need to print this email? P Économisons le papier – est-il vraiment nécessaire d’imprimer ce courriel?  

“My friends, love is better than anger. Hope is better than fear. Optimism is better than despair. So let us be loving, hopeful and optimistic. And we’ll change the world.”-Jack Layton, 1950-2011 « Mes amis, l’amour est cent fois meilleur que la haine. L’espoir est meilleur que la peur. L’optimisme est meilleur que le désespoir. Alors aimons,  gardons espoir et restons optimistes. Et nous changerons le monde. »-Jack Layton, 1950-2011


June 2, 2021

Gord Johns, M.P. Courtenay-Alberni

Dear Mike, 
Thank you for contacting us regarding the changes to the Broadcasting Act. Bill C-10 is flawed and is causing too much concern among many Canadians who fear C-10 will infringe on freedom of speech. The NDP has always defended the fundamental principle of free speech and continues to do so as we work to improve this bill.  New Democrats want to see a bill that supports and encourages Canadian content, holds web giants accountable and ensures they pay their fair share, and protects the freedoms that people across Canada currently enjoy. 

Many of us are increasingly concerned about the power of the web giants. I am alarmed by the fact that they do not play by the same rules as Canadian companies and don’t pay their fair share. The CRTC has never regulated online platforms that compete unfairly with our local businesses. As a result of this unfair competition, our cultural businesses have less revenue and thousands of workers are left in precarious situations.  C-10 has the potential to re-establish a level playing field between the web giants and our local companies who contribute to the flourishing of our media and cultural industries and who do abide by the CRTC’s rules.

The NDP is fighting to close loopholes that these large corporations take advantage of. Furthermore, we will be pressing the Liberals to ensure that CRTC regulations are fair while protecting the fundamental principles of free speech. We will always stand up for freedom of expression and we will ensure that this bill moves forward without loopholes classifying individual users of social media services as broadcasters. There are over 100 proposed amendments to Bill C-10. Until there is a final bill in front of the NDP that holds the web giants to account while assuring Canadians of their freedom of speech, we will not commit to support the bill. 

Sincerely,  Gord Johns, M.P. Courtenay-Alberni


June 2, 2021
Office of Paul Manly

Dear Jerrilyn,  

My name is Irene and I am Paul Manly’s Legislative Assistant. Thank you for sharing your letter with Paul. As you may have seen, Paul has been actively involved in putting forward amendments to bill C-10 and he has more amendments still to bring forward to committee.  I will pass along your letter to Paul so he is aware of your position. 

Best regards,Irene 

Irene Brueckner-Irwin (she/her/elle)

Legislative Assistant | Adjointe LégislativeOffice of Paul Manly, M.P. | Bureau de Paul Manly, député

irene.brueckner-irwin.818@parl.gc.ca | t : 613-992-5243 | c : 613-795-4472 I work on unceded Algonquin Anishinaabe territory.Je travail sur le territoire Algonquin anishinaabe non cédé.


May 31, 2021

Jenny Kwan, MP

Dear Jerrilyn, Thanks very much for sending this letter to Jenny’s attention.

Best regards, Lisa

Lisa MacLeod

Member’s Assistant | Adjointe de la députéeOffice of Jenny Kwan, MP | Vancouver EastBureau de Jenny Kwan, Députée | Vancouver-EstNDP | NPD


May 19, 2021

Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage

Good Afternoon Ms. Kirk, 

I acknowledge receipt of your letter to the Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage on the topic of Bill-C10, An Act to amend the Broadcasting Act and to make related and consequential amendments to other Acts. It will be translated and distributed to committee members.  

Kind regards,

Aimée Belmore
Committee Clerk / Greffière de Comité
Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage / Comité permanent du patrimoine canadienHouse of Commons / Chambre des communes 

131 Queen Street, Room 6-35 / rue, Queen, pièce 6-35
Ottawa, Ontario K1A 0A6
CHPC@parl.gc.ca
Tel. / Tél. : +1 613-947-6729



May 19, 2021

Todd Doherty Member of Parliament for Cariboo-Prince George

Dear Ms. Schembri,  

Thank you for sharing with our office the BC Library Trustees Association’s letter to the House of Commons Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage, expressing your concerns on the government’s Bill C-10.   It has been brought to MP Todd Doherty’s attention.   

Social media has rapidly become the platform for this purpose, from cellphone videos of interactions with police to social media posts by survivors of sexual assault and harassment leading to the #MeToo movement. In a society that values freedom of speech and expression, Bill C-10 leaves the door open for a massive abuse of power on the rights of Canadians.   

Canada’s Conservatives support creating a level playing field between large foreign streaming services and Canadian broadcasters and championing Canadian arts and culture. A Conservative government would do so without compromising Canadians’ fundamental rights and freedoms.  As such, Conservatives are calling on Justin Trudeau to withdraw Bill C-10. If this is not done, a Conservative government will stand up for Canadians and repeal this deeply flawed legislation.  

We would also like to share with you the statement issued by Conservative MPs Rachael Harder and Alain Rayes, calling on the Liberals to ensure the protection of Canadians online.  

Regards, 
Mohan Samarasinghe 

Executive Assistant Office of Todd Doherty Member of Parliament for Cariboo-Prince George Special Advisor to the Leader on Mental Health and Wellness Office: (613) 995-6704 Cell: (613) 797-4814 E-mail : Todd.Doherty@parl.gc.ca


May 19, 2021

Cathy McLeod, MPKamloops-Thompson-Cariboo

Dear Jerrilyn, 

Thank you for your letter. Unfortunately the Bloc Quebecois have agreed to support the Liberals on Bill C-10. As a result, it will be very tough to stop it. Having said that, I would expect that there would be many court challenges. 

While the NDP and the Bloc may look the other way on the freedom of expression, we will not. If elected, a Conservative government will stand up for Canadians and repeal this deeply flawed legislation. 

Stay safe, 

Cathy McLeod, MPKamloops-Thompson-Cariboo


May 19, 2021

Kerry-Lynne Findlay, Member of Parliament for South Surrey-White Rock

Dear Mike and Board Members,

On behalf of Kerry-Lynne Findlay, Member of Parliament for South Surrey-White Rock, I would like to acknowledge receipt of your e-mail and thank you for taking the time to share your concerns with her on this important issue.  

Please be assured that your correspondence has been brought to Kerry-Lynne’s attention and that your views and suggestions are being carefully considered.  In order to ease communication, it would be greatly appreciated if you could send me your residential address, telephone, and mobile number. If you have recently confirmed your contact information for us, you can ignore this request. 

Conservatives support creating a level playing field between large foreign streaming services and Canadian broadcasters while protecting the individual rights and freedoms of Canadians. Unfortunately, what the Liberals have proposed is a clear attack on those rights and freedoms. 

We are concerned that this legislation gives sweeping power to the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) to regulate the internet, including individual users, with no clear guidelines for how that power will be used. 

In committee, the Liberals chose to remove the clause that would have protected content posted by individuals. This will allow your content to be regulated and removed by CRTC without just cause. 

In MP Findlay’s opinion, this is a clear violation of our freedom of expression rights under the Charter. She recently spoke in the House on this issue. You can view that here. She and her Conservative colleagues will continue to stand up for the freedoms of Canadians who post their content online and oppose C-10 at every stage of the legislative process. 

Thank you again for contacting this office.  

Sincerely,  
Francesca Desaulniers 
Executive Assistant 


May 19, 2021

Office of Rob Morrison, Member of Parliament 
Kootenay Columbia 

Good afternoon Mike,

Thank you for reaching out with your concern for Bill C-10.  

Bill C-10, an Act to amend the Broadcasting Act is currently being debated and amended in the House Committee on Canadian Heritage. On April 23rd, 2021, the government voted against the section of their own Bill that would have at least partially exempted individual users who upload videos to social media sites like YouTube and Facebook from CRTC regulation under the Bill. This is another unacceptable attempt by the government to target the freedoms of individual internet users in Canada. Please see the full Bill here: https://parl.ca/DocumentViewer/en/43-2/bill/C-10/first-reading

MP Morrison does support creating a level playing field between large foreign streaming services and Canadian broadcasters. However, he believes strongly  that we must ensure the protection of the individual rights and freedoms of Canadians. In its current form, MP Morrison will not vote for this Bill. 

Warm regards, 

Sarah Turk 
Constituency Assistant
Office of Rob Morrison, Member of Parliament 
Kootenay Columbia 
National Security and Intelligence Committee 
 
800C Baker St., Cranbrook, BC V1C 1A2 
Tel: (250) 417-2250 Toll Free: (800) 668-5522 
E-mail: sarah.turk@parl.gc.ca 

May 21, 2021

Elizabeth May, MP

Thank you for sharing your concerns about Bill C-10.

Bill C-10 was introduced by the government to modernize the Broadcasting Act. Among other updates, it would bring online broadcasting platforms, such as Netflix, under the same broadcasting rules as traditional broadcasters.  

An update to the Broadcasting Act is long overdue, but Bill C-10 is flawed. The government has not made it clear enough to Canadians that their charter rights to freedom of speech will be upheld.

I share many of the concerns that have been raised about the bill. My fellow Green MP Paul Manly (Nanaimo – Ladysmith) brought forward 27 amendments to try to fix the issues with the bill. To-date, over 120 amendments have been brought forward from all political parties.

I was surprised that the Canadian Heritage Committee voted to remove clause 3 from the bill, which would have excluded the content posted on social media by Canadians from potential regulation. There were no objections to removing this clause and none of the political parties with voting seats on the committee requested a recorded vote to put any opposition on record.

The Green Party does not have a voting seat at committee. However, Paul Manly brought forward an amendment that would have fixed the issue by clarifying that social media platforms should be regulated as broadcasters when they are acting like broadcasters (for example, if YouTube was producing its own content for Canadians to watch, the way Netflix does). His amendment would not have opened up any possibility of regulating social media users or the content they upload. Unfortunately, the Liberal, Conservative, and Bloc MPs voted his amendment down.  

It’s important to note that Bill C-10 has not been finalized. There are still dozens of amendments to consider, and the bill could still change. The Canadian Heritage Committee is only halfway through its consideration of the bill and more amendments can be brought forward at the next stage of the legislative process.

Thanks again for writing.

Sincerely,

Elizabeth May, O.C.
Member of Parliament
Saanich – Gulf Islands
Caucus Parliamentary Leader


Response: Office of the Prime Minister (May 26, 2021)

Dear Mr. Gagel:

On behalf of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, I would like to acknowledge receipt of your correspondence of May 13, 2021, regarding Bill C-10: An Act to amend the Broadcasting Act and to make consequential amendments to other Acts.

Thank you for writing to the Prime Minister. You may be assured that your comments, offered on behalf of the British Columbia Library Trustees Association, have been carefully reviewed.

In your correspondence, you raise an issue that falls more directly within the portfolio of the Honourable Steven Guilbeault, Minister of Canadian Heritage. I have therefore taken the liberty of forwarding your correspondence to Minister Guilbeault for his information and consideration.

Once again, thank you for writing to the Prime Minister.

K. Bentsen
Executive Correspondence Officer / Agente de correspondance
Executive Correspondence Services / Services de la correspondance
de la haute direction

Response: Gord Johns, M.P. (NDP) Courtenay-Alberni

Dear Mike,
Thank you for contacting us regarding the changes to the Broadcasting Act. Bill C-10 is flawed and is causing too much concern among many Canadians who fear C-10 will infringe on freedom of speech.
 
The NDP has always defended the fundamental principle of free speech and continues to do so as we work to improve this bill. 
 
New Democrats want to see a bill that supports and encourages Canadian content, holds web giants accountable and ensures they pay their fair share, and protects the freedoms that people across Canada currently enjoy.
 
Many of us are increasingly concerned about the power of the web giants. I am alarmed by the fact that they do not play by the same rules as Canadian companies and don’t pay their fair share.
 
The CRTC has never regulated online platforms that compete unfairly with our local businesses. As a result of this unfair competition, our cultural businesses have less revenue and thousands of workers are left in precarious situations. 
 
C-10 has the potential to re-establish a level playing field between the web giants and our local companies who contribute to the flourishing of our media and cultural industries and who do abide by the CRTC’s rules. The NDP is fighting to close loopholes that these large corporations take advantage of.
 
Furthermore, we will be pressing the Liberals to ensure that CRTC regulations are fair while protecting the fundamental principles of free speech. We will always stand up for freedom of expression and we will ensure that this bill moves forward without loopholes classifying individual users of social media services as broadcasters.
 
There are over 100 proposed amendments to Bill C-10. Until there is a final bill in front of the NDP that holds the web giants to account while assuring Canadians of their freedom of speech, we will not commit to support the bill.
 
Sincerely,
Gord Johns, M.P.
Courtenay-Alberni