OTTAWA, Oct. 8 /CNW Telbec/ - A national advertising campaign starting
today urges voters to support candidates who are in favour of maintaining
domestic ownership and control of Canadian broadcasting and communications
"If we lose control of our media, we lose control of the messaging of our
national identity and democratic debate. We will no longer have the ability to
tell our own stories and see the world through Canadian eyes," said Peter
Murdoch, Vice President - Media for CEP.
The Keep it Canadian ad campaign targets voters in battleground ridings
across the country and is sponsored by three of Canada's leading voices in
culture and communications - ACTRA, the Communications, Energy and
Paperworkers Union of Canada (CEP) and Friends of Canadian Broadcasting.
"Stephen Harper's plans to relax foreign ownership are culturally and
economically irresponsible. Canada's cultural industries indirectly contribute
$85 billion, and over one million jobs to the Canadian economy. To put an
industry that plays such a vital role in Canada's economy at risk is fiscally
irresponsible," said Stephen Waddell, ACTRA's National Executive Director.
The groups have sponsored the ad campaign to draw attention to the desire
of Mr. Harper to allow Canadian broadcasters and telecommunications companies
to sell off to the highest foreign bidder.
Mr. Harper declared on September 25th that, if re-elected, he would allow
foreign ownership of telecommunications companies. All Conservative MPs voted
against a motion in the House of Commons on May 30, 2006, calling for the
retention of current restrictions on foreign ownership in the cultural sector.
As well, the Conservative Party's 2004 election platform calls for the
relaxation or removal of communications sector foreign ownership restrictions.
"Prime Minister Harper has made it abundantly clear that he wants to
allow the sale of Canadian communications and media companies to foreign
interests. It's a long standing policy of Mr. Harper's Conservative Party,"
said Ian Morrison, spokesperson for Friends of Canadians Broadcasting.
According to a December 2007 Harris-Decima survey, most voters (66%)
believe broadcasting and communications are too important to our national
security and cultural sovereignty to allow foreign control of Canadian
companies in this sector. The poll found that 62% of Canadians are more likely
to vote for candidates who oppose giving control of Canadian media to foreign
interests, up slightly from December 2003 when this question was last posed.
Only 19% are more likely to vote for a candidate who is in favour of allowing
foreign companies to own more of Canada's broadcasting and telephone
For further information:
For further information: Carol Taverner, National Public Relations
Officer, ACTRA, (416) 644-1519, email@example.com; Peter Murdoch, CEP, (905)
516-5720; Jim Thompson, Friends of Canadian Broadcasting, (613) 447-9592,
firstname.lastname@example.org; To view the ads, go to www.keepitcanadian.net