CLC criticizes layoffs at the CBC: Questions government commitment to public broadcasting

April 11, 2014
OTTAWA ― The President of the Canadian Labour Congress has criticized the staffing cuts announced at the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation.

“This is just the latest round of job cuts at our national broadcaster and once again the CBC is being asked to fulfill its mandate but to do so with fewer resources,” Georgetti says. 

Georgetti was commenting on an announcement by CBC management that its workforce will be cut by 657 over the next two years as the public broadcaster deals with a $130 million revenue shortfall from the loss of NHL hockey and government budget cuts. Unions at the CBC have been advised that the majority of this year’s staffing cuts will be implemented in August with layoff letters slated to be issued as early as June and redundancy notices to be given by end of April.

Georgetti says that the loss of advertising revenues from NHL hockey explains only part of the CBC’s budget shortfall. “Between 2011 and 2015, the federal government’s financial support of the CBC will be reduced from $1.03 billion to $913 million. This is death by a thousand cuts and we really do have to ask whether this government supports public broadcasting.”

Georgetti adds that many of the positions being lost at the CBC are good, family-supporting jobs. “This fits a wider pattern of Canadians losing good jobs at a time when most of the jobs being created in this country are part-time, precarious and poorly paid. This is no way for workers, particularly younger workers, to build a future.”

The Canadian Labour Congress, the national voice of the labour movement, represents 3.3 million Canadian workers. The CLC brings together Canada’s national and international unions along with the provincial and territorial federations of labour and 111 district labour councils.

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