WATERLOO, ON, Feb. 1, 2012 /CNW/ - A substantial majority (73%) of
Kamloops area residents would like CBC to establish a local radio
station to cover community affairs and three-quarters (76%) hope their
MP would champion a new station or not oppose it. These findings emerge
from a new opinion survey commissioned by the broadcast watchdog group
Friends of Canadian Broadcasting.
On May 26, 2011, the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation announced plans
to introduce new radio services based in Kamloops to serve northern
parts of the southern Interior region in the autumn of 2012, but since
then threatened budget cuts have cast doubt on CBC's capacity to
deliver on this promise.
According to the survey, area residents who hope their MP will be a
champion and fight for the new service outnumber those who would rather
their MP support cuts to CBC's budget by a factor of two to one, while
one-in-four would prefer their MP to remain neutral.
The opinions of people in the region appear to be at odds with the plans
of the federal government.
"The federal government's plan to make a substantial cut of 10% or more
to the CBC's budget will have devastating consequences for listeners and viewers and could well scuttle the promised new
service, an outcome that will clearly be off-side with the priorities
of residents of the area," said Morrison.
If more money is required by the CBC to deliver its promise, most
Kamloops area residents would support that.
More than half (57%) agree that "just as small provinces have their own
CBC stations, regions like mine should have their own stations, even if
it requires giving the CBC a bit more money". Only one-in-five (21%)
The survey found that two thirds (66%) of area residents would counsel
their MP to maintain or increase CBC funding. Only 17% would advise
their MP to vote to cut the CBC's funding.
"Cathy McLeod knows her constituents want her to support the CBC and
this survey shows that two-thirds (66%) of area residents would like to
see the CBC's budget increased or maintained and they would like her to
help make this happen," Morrison said.
Even though the Conservative Party promised to maintain or increase CBC
funding during the recent election campaign, Heritage Minister James
Moore is now talking about substantial cuts to the national public
broadcaster in the upcoming federal budget.
"We believe in the national public broadcaster. We have said that we
will maintain or increase support for the CBC. That is our platform and
we have said that before and we will commit to that."
James Moore, May 3, 2011
"The Conservatives promised time and again before, during and after the
election campaign to maintain or increase CBC funding. Breaking this
promise will go against the grain for most people in the Kamloops area
and elsewhere in Canada," Morrison said.
The survey also found that half (54%) of the region's residents agree
with a recent House of Commons Heritage Committee recommendation that
annual CBC funding should be increased from $33 per Canadian to $40,
while 20% think this recommendation should be rejected because it is
Six-in-ten (64%) residents agree that the CBC provides good coverage of
local news and cultural events even without a local station, but this
level of agreement is significantly less than Canadians in other parts
of the country.
Prime Minister Harper and his Conservative government carry a reputation
for being hostile to Canadian culture and the CBC. According to the
survey, 60% think Canada's level of public broadcaster funding is
indicative of the federal government's treatment of the cultural sector
overall, and more than half of area residents (53%) think Canada's
level of public broadcaster funding is insufficient to maintain a
unique and vibrant Canadian identity and culture.
As for which political party is most trusted to protect the CBC, the
Conservative Party scores lowest at 15% followed by the Liberal Party
at 27% with the NDP being most trusted to protect the CBC by 58%.
Canada-wide, the CBC remains extremely popular with Canadians, who by
wide majorities give the CBC high marks for meeting its mandate to
present programs that inform, enlighten and entertain (77%) as well as
its mandate to serve the broadcasting needs of Canada's regions (68%).
The online survey of 2022 adult Canadians conducted from November 4 to
10 has a margin of error of +/- 2.18%, 19 times out of 20. Kamloops
region data are based on a sample of 164 adults living in the area and
have a margin of error of +/- 7.65%, 19 times out of 20.
The survey was designed and administered by political scientists Peter
Loewen, Assistant Professor at the University of Toronto and Daniel
Rubenson, Associate Professor at Ryerson University. Fieldwork for the
poll was done by Vision Critical on the Angus Reid Forum National
SOURCE Friends of Canadian Broadcasting
For further information:
Jim Thompson 613-447-9592