Today, the Canadian Media Guild (CMG) filed nominations with the Honourable Shelly Glover, Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages to support non-patronage appointments to the vacant spot on the CBC Board. CMG is proposing award-winning broadcasters Francine Pelletier and Jean-François Lépine to fill the position on the public broadcaster’s Board that is now vacant following the recent resignation of George Cooper of Halifax.
“As CBC Board Chair Rémi Racine appears before the Senate Committee looking into the challenges facing CBC/Radio-Canada, CMG is renewing its call for a non-partisan, public and transparent process to appoint the public broadcaster’s Board of directors and CEO, which is key to guaranteeing independence for CBC and accountability to Canadians,” says CMG president Carmel Smyth. “There is no question that the current Board which is stacked with Conservative Party activists and donors is not set up to properly represent the interests of the national public broadcaster and of Canadians.”
According to Smyth, the hyper-partisanship of the current Board must be replaced by the stewardship of the best people available to lead CBC, and this is why CMG is proposing Francine Pelletier and Jean-François Lépine.
“At a time when CBC cuts are doing incredible damage to local programming, including services in French outside Québec, it’s good to see committed, independent and exceptionally qualified advocates such as Francine and Jean-François ready to serve,” Smyth says
CMG has long advocated for an independent Board as part of ensuring independence and vitality at CBC/ Radio-Canada.
Our nominees in their own words
“CBC/ Radio-Canada: a vital cultural institution
No media has had a greater role in nation building in this country than CBC/Radio-Canada.
Without the public broadcaster, and its record of excellence, Canada would be more isolated regionally, impoverished culturally and more vulnerable politically.
A great part of the soul of French Canada is in the hands of Radio-Canada. The future of Radio-Canada is the future of French Canada, it is a vital cultural institution for all francophones in Canada.”
“Radio-Canada/CBC from the heart
To me, CBC/Radio-Canada, as a public broadcaster that belongs to all Canadians, is a unique instrument of our democracy, because it’s a distinctive voice that is, in principle, not subject to any commercial, political or ideological influence.
It’s also the only Canadian news organization that is able to guarantee that its openness to the outside world will never be jeopardized by the vagaries of the market economy.
However, the quality of any public broadcaster in a democracy can only be guaranteed through the sustainability and independence of its funding sources. This is why we fight for the survival of CBC/Radio-Canada and for its public funding which guarantees its independence.”