TORONTO, Nov. 6, 2013 /CNW/ - Unifor, Canada's largest media union, is
calling on the CRTC to unequivocally reject Bell Media's application to
circumvent their license obligations to provide local news and
"If the CRTC bends to Bell Media's pressure, we fear it could be the
beginning of the end of local news and programming as we know it in
Canadian television," said Unifor Media Sector Director Howard Law.
"Bell Media has asked previously for an averaging formula, and it was
rejected. They are persistent in their pressure, but the CRTC must be
equally strong and consistent in enforcing Bell Media-CTV's license
The application by Bell Media-CTV asks the CRTC to amend their license
requirements to "average" local programming hours over three month
periods, providing the possibility of reducing or abandoning altogether
regular weekly programming.
"Canadians expect that local programming will be consistent, reliable
and broadcast by Canadians for Canadians," said Unifor Media Council
Chairperson Randy Kitt. Kitt is the president of Unifor 79M,
repre0senting CTV employees.
"Bell has not explained how local communities will benefit from either
random or scheduled periods of reduced local television programming,"
Unifor argued to the CRTC. "A review of Bell's program logs indicate
that its stations produce very little non-news local programming -
meaning that the main effect of Bell's proposal would be to reduce the
level of regularly scheduled local news available to communities. The
CRTC should not approve applications whose effect will be to reduce the
news on which people rely for information about their communities."
Unifor's submission to the CRTC, including the executive summary, can be
read by clicking this link: http://www.unifor.org/sites/default/files/attachments/unifor_submission_bnoc_2013-529_5_nov_2013.pdf
For further information:
please contact Howard Law, Unifor Media Sector Director (416) 456-1875