We are disappointed with CBC’s brash decision to cancel local English television newscasts across the country at this time of heightened concern about public safety.
CMG shares Canadians’ surprise that the public broadcaster would decrease its service during an unprecedented health crisis, at a time when Canadians need reliable, trusted information more than ever.
Today, the Corporation announced its intention to broadcast all television news from CBC News Network in Toronto for the duration of the COVID-19 crisis.
CBC says the one-hour national show will have ‘additional’ regional content, but it provided little detail of what that entailed.
This decision flies in the face of past experience which has proven time and again that in times of significant events, Canadians trust and rely on CBC news coverage, particularly for its widespread coverage of regional and local impact, something no other Canadian network can match.
We urge CBC to reconsider this decision and seek the resources necessary to provide local television news in both official languages in every province and territory, as it is mandated to do.
The Corporation’s decision to cancel local news has caused outrage among CBC workers, who are ready to use technology and the tools recommended by public health officials to do their work remotely and continue serving the public interest. Please share your experiences and the impact of this change on your community with the union, at firstname.lastname@example.org, using #restorelocalnews in the subject line.
We hope and expect that no company would use a public health crisis to downsize or cut news services permanently, especially outside of large centers, where the need is greater.
President, CBC Branch, Canadian Media Guild (CMG)
National President, Canadian Media Guild (CMG)