In the 2012 federal budget, the Conservative government announced their plan to cut $115 million from the CBC’s annual budget between 2012 and 2015. An additional cut of $130 million by 2016 was announced in April 2014.
Total job loss: 1,307 jobs. Impact on those who care about what it means to be Canadian — significant!
Why should we care? It is the CBC, our public broadcaster, that keeps us informed on what the issues are across our country (i.e. Cross Country Check Up), keeps us entertained (i.e. The Debaters) and gives us the opportunity to laugh while we learn (i.e. The Rick Mercer Report) to name just a few program highlights.
When you live in a largely rural region like the Kootenays, CBC Radio becomes the friend that travels with you along our highways. Simply stated, we need expanded CBC coverage, not less.
Cutting millions of dollars will take us in the wrong direction both nationally and internationally. We need the CBC when we travel on business or vacation, or as part of the Armed Forces, to keep us in touch with home.
In the early 1980s, I co-ordinated a series featuring B.C.’s Provincial Parks with CBC television called Adventure BC. I travelled the province with a producer, a cameraman and program host Bob Switzer, provided by CBC television. Using local experts, we featured what makes parks and heritage places like Cody Caves, Ft. Steele, and St Mary’s Alpine such important assets.
More Conservative government means not only will regional programming be a thing of the past, meaningful national coverage will also be seriously at risk.
If we care about Canada and the things that define us as Canadians, we can’t let that happen.