Canada-wide

CACTUS Offers Workshop at People's Social Forum Aug. 22

CACTUS will be offering a workshop entitled "Reclaiming Our Community TV Channels" at the Peoples’ Social Forum (PSF) in Ottawa on Friday August 22nd. CACTUS has also been invited to participate in a panel hosted by rabble.ca about how independent media can be used to support social movements, and by Communicatons Workers of America (Canada) about funding models for alternative media.

In case you haven't heard of the PSF, its web site describes it as "a critical public space aimed at fostering activist involvement of individuals and civil society organizations that want to transform Canada as it exists today. It is a space for social movements to meet and converge, for the free expression of alternative ideas and grassroots exchanges. Social justice, Original Peoples rights, sustainable development, international solidarity and participatory democracy are at the centre of its concerns." Ten thousand people are expected to participate and the keynote address will be given by Naomi Klein.

CACTUS hopes to both network with other community and alternative media, but also with environmental, First Nations, and social justice organizations about how community media can help them get their messages out.

For more information about the PSF, see:

People's Social Forum 2014.

Attendees are being billetted with Ottawa residents.

Entry for the whole forum is only $20.

CACTUS' workshop will be offered from 1 - 2:30 p.m. on Friday.

The rabble.ca panel, which will be moderated by Judy Rebick and in which CACTUS is taking part, will be offered immediately following at 2:45 p.m. (more information here):

Rabble.ca-hosted "Media and the Movements"

The CWA panel regarding community media funding will be immediately following the rabble.ca panel at 4:30.

For the Alternative Media Assembly being held on Saturday, August 23rd, CACTUS has made a proposal that we hope other groups will endorse and help us develop: to develop an updated policy for community media in Canada, that reflects the realities of digital production and distribution.

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Heritage Committee Clarifies Role of Community Element/ Le comité du patrimoine précise le rôle de l'élément communautaire

(En français ci-dessous)

CACTUS worked hard with its community media colleagues to develop amendments to Bill C-11 (which will lead to a new broadcasting act) to clarify the role of the community element in the broadcasting system. On June 14th, the Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage adopted every one.

The 1991 Broadcasting Act made only one mention of the “community element” and provided neither a legal definition for it nor any description of its role, despite stipulating that the three elements (public, private and community) should work together in an “appropriate” manner toward fulfilling the goals of the act.

The bill now goes to the Senate in late summer or early fall, after which the amendments will become law. It will then be the work of the CRTC to implement the spirit and letter of the new legislation in policy.

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CACTUS a travaillé dur avec ses collègues des médias communautaires pour développer des amendements au projet de loi C-11 (qui mènera à une nouvelle loi sur la radiodiffusion) afin de clarifier le rôle de l'élément communautaire dans le système de radiodiffusion. Le 14 juin, le Comité permanent du patrimoine canadien a adopté chacun d'entre eux.

La Loi sur la radiodiffusion de 1991 ne mentionnait qu'une seule fois l'" élément communautaire " et n'en donnait aucune définition juridique ni aucune description de son rôle, même si elle stipulait que les trois éléments (public, privé et communautaire) devaient travailler ensemble de manière " appropriée " pour atteindre les objectifs de la loi.

Le projet de loi va maintenant être soumis au Sénat à la fin de l'été ou au début de l'automne, après quoi les amendements auront force de loi. Il appartiendra alors au CRTC de mettre en œuvre l'esprit et la lettre de la nouvelle législation dans ses politiques.

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Recipients for Local Journalism Initiative 2022-23/Beneficiares de l'Initiative de Journalisme Local 2022-23

(version francaise en bas)

The 2018 federal budget announced that $50 million would be set aside over 5 years to support not-for-profit journalism in underserved communities (for example remote communities) to support “professional journalists” for the production of “civic journalism”: that is, coverage that supports the democratic life of the community including municipal council, elections, school boards, band councils, and other significant community organizations and stakeholders.

CACTUS and the Fédération were chosen along with five other Administrative Organizations to act as intermediaries between government and media to deploy this money during the first two years of the LJI (October 1, 2019 - March 31, 2021). CACTUS' LJI contract with the Department of Canadian Heritage was extended for an additional 3 years (April 1, 2021 – March 31, 2024), with an additional allocation for 2021-22 and 2022-23 to focus on underrepresented voices. As a result of this funding increase, CACTUS will distribute funding to:

  • community media organizations that are underserved by other media because of geographic location
  • support under-represented voices, including (but not limited to) Indigenous, racialized and official language minorities.

The list of recipients for 2022-2023 are provided below.

The new funds will build on the successful model developed by CACTUS, its partners and journalists in the first phase of the program. We are excited that CACTUS will enable more communities to host a civic journalist, create more jobs for video journalists, and provide more support for underrepresented voices. These objectives are key to community media's philosophy of supporting diversity and dialogue about civic affairs, particularly in communities not served by other media.

CACTUS and the Fédération were also gratified to see that the budget announced in April commits to doubling the funding for this successful program in 2023-24, and in continuing the focus on underrepresented narratives and voices. Local journalism and the community media infrastructure that supports it are fundamental to our democracy.

Content created under the LJI can be found at ComMediaPortal.ca/ PortailMédias.ca.

Recipients/Bénéficiaires 2022-23

1. Metro Vancouver Community Media Society – New Westminster, British Columbia
2. Tri-Cities Community Television – Coquitlam, Port Coquitlam and Port Moody, British Columbia
3. Sun Valley Entertainment Society – Ashcroft BC (Indigenous/autochtone)
4. Sipishk Communications Inc. - Beauval Saskatchewan (Indigenous/autochtone)
5. Neepawa Access Community Television – Neepawa, Manitoba
6. U Multicultural Incorporated – Winnipeg, Manitoba (multicultural/multiculturel)
7. Schreiber Media Centre – Schreiber, Ontario
8. Barrie Community Media – Barrie, Ontario
9. Focus Media Centre – Toronto, Ontario (multiculturel)
10. Télévision communautaire de la Cité de Clarence Rockland inc. (TVC22), Clarence- Rockland, Ontario (bilingual; official language minority; bilingue, langue officielle minoritaire)
11. Nunavut Independent Television Network (Indigenous)
12. Community University Television – Concordia (CUTV) Montreal, Quebec (official language minority/; langue officielle minoritaire)
13. Télévision Communautaire Frontenac – Montreal, Quebec (multicultural/multiculturel)
15. Télévision Communautaire de Grande-Rivière - Grande-Rivière, Quebec
16. Télé-Coeur – Saint-Léonard-d’Aston, Québec
17. Télévision Communautaire de l’Érable – Plessisville, Quebec
18. Télé-Soleil Inc. Mont-Louis, Québec
19. Corporation de télédiffusion régionale de berthierville inc – Berthierville, Quebec
20. TVC7 - Abitibi, Québec
21. New Brunswick Media Co-op – Fredericton, NB (Indigenous/autochtone)
22. St. Andrews Community Channel Inc. - St. Andrews, New Brunswick
23. Telile - Ile Madame Community Television Society – Arichat, Nova Scotia (bilingual; official language minority/bilingue; langue officielle minoritaire)

Le budget fédéral 2018 a annoncé que 50 millions de dollars seraient mis de côté sur 5 ans pour soutenir le journalisme à but non lucratif dans les communautés mal desservies (par exemple les communautés éloignées) afin de soutenir les « journalistes professionnels » pour la production de « journalisme civique » : c'est-à-dire la couverture qui soutient la vie démocratique de la communauté, y compris le conseil municipal, les élections, les conseils scolaires, les conseils de bande et d'autres organisations communautaires importantes et parties prenantes.

CACTUS et la Fédération ont été choisis, avec cinq autres organisations administratives, pour servir d'intermédiaires entre le gouvernement et les médias afin de déployer cet argent pendant les deux premières années de l'IJL (1er octobre 2019 au 31 mars 2021). Le contrat de l'IJL de CACTUS avec le ministère du Patrimoine canadien a été prolongé de trois ans (1er avril 2021 au 31 mars 2024), avec une allocation supplémentaire pour 2021-22 et 2022-23 afin de se concentrer sur les voix sous-représentées. Grâce à cette augmentation de financement, CACTUS distribuera des fonds aux :

  • organisations de médias communautaires dans les régions qui sont mal desservies par d'autres médias en raison de leur situation géographique
  • minorités sous-représentées, y compris (mais sans s'y limiter) les minorités autochtones, racialisées et de langue officielle.

La liste des bénéficiaires pour 2022-2023 est presenté en haut.

Cathy Edwards, directrice générale de CACTUS, affirme que les nouveaux fonds s'appuieront sur le modèle fructueux élaboré par CACTUS, ses partenaires et les journalistes, lors de la première phase du programme. « Nous sommes ravis que CACTUS permette à davantage de communautés d'accueillir un journaliste civique, de créer davantage d'emplois pour les journalistes vidéo et de soutenir davantage les voix sous-représentées. Ces objectifs sont essentiels à la philosophie des médias communautaires, qui consiste à soutenir la diversité et le dialogue sur les affaires civiques, en particulier dans les communautés non desservies par d'autres médias. »

CACTUS et la Fédération ont également été heureuses de constater que le budget annoncé en avril s'engage à doubler le financement de ce programme réussi en 2023-24, et à continuer à mettre l'accent sur les récits et les voix sous-représentés. « Le journalisme local et l'infrastructure médiatique communautaire qui le soutient sont fondamentaux pour notre démocratie », a déclaré Amélie Hinse, directrice de la Fédération.

Le contenu créé dans le cadre de l'IJL peut être consulté sur PortailMédias.ca/ComMediaPortal.ca .

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Formulaire de candidature pour l'Initiative de journalisme local (.doc)

Formulaire de candidature pour l'Initiative de journalisme local (.doc)

- format editable
- date limite: le 15 octobre, 2021

Formulaire de candidature pour l'Initiative de journalisme local (.pdf)

Formulaire de candidature pour l'Initiative de journalisme local (.pdf)

- pour le financement 1 avril 2021 jusqu'au 31 mars, 2023

- date limite: 15 octobre, 2021

LJI Application Form (.doc) Phase II

Local Journalism Initiative guidelines and application form for April 1, 2021 through March 31, 2023.

.odt format (editable)

Local Journalism Initiative Phase II Application Form and Guidelines

Guidelines and Application form for the Local Journalism Initiative Phase II (April 1, 2021 to March 31, 2023)

Deadline: Oct. 15, 2021

Local Journalism Initiative Open for Applications/l'Initiative de journalisme local ouverte aux candidatures

(francais en-dessous) CACTUS is pleased to announce that the Government of Canada has renewed its funding to support journalists and communities under the Local Journalism Initiative (the LJI) for another 3 years in association with the Fédération des télévisions communautaires autonomes du Québec (the Fédération).

If your community media organization is not yet a recipient of LJI Funding, we invite your application. We also invite organizations which were unsuccessful last round to resubmit an application as additional money has been allocated to the program as part of the Federal Government's Budget 2021 allocation to assist cultural industries to recover from COVID.

As a result of this funding increase, CACTUS will distribute:

  • a maximum of just over $2 million to community media organizations that are underserved by other media because of geographic location

  • a minimum of $1.1 million to support under-represented voices, including (but not limited to) Indigenous, racialized and official language minorities

These new funds will build on the successful model developed by CACTUS, its partners and journalists in the first phase of the program. We are excited that CACTUS will enable more communities to host a civic journalist, create more jobs for video journalists, and provide more support for underrepresented voices. These objectives are key to community media's philosophy of supporting diversity and dialogue about civic affairs, particularly in communities not served by other media.

Application forms for community media organizations interested to host a civic journalist are available:

The deadline to apply is October 15, 2021.

Stories created under the LJI in its first phase can be seen and downloaded from ComMediaPortal.ca.

If you have questions about the application process, we will be hosting an additional zoom meeting on Monday, October 4th at 3 pm EST. Please contact us at victorialjicactus@gmail.com or Victoria Fenner at 705-279-5729 if you would like an invitation.

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CACTUS est heureux d'annoncer que le gouvernement du Canada a renouvelé son financement pour soutenir les journalistes et les communautés dans le cadre de l'Initiative de journalisme local (l'IJL) pour une autre période de 3 ans en association avec la Fédération des télévisions communautaires autonomes du Québec (la Fédération).

Si votre organisme de médias communautaires n'est pas encore bénéficiaire du financement de l'IJL, nous vous invitons à présenter votre demande. Nous invitons également les organismes qui n'ont pas été retenus lors de la dernière ronde à soumettre une nouvelle demande, car des fonds supplémentaires ont été alloués au programme dans le cadre du budget 2021 du gouvernement fédéral pour aider les industries culturelles à se remettre du COVID.

En raison de cette augmentation de financement, CACTUS distribuera :

  • un maximum d'un peu plus de 2 millions de dollars à des organismes de médias communautaires qui sont mal desservis par d'autres médias en raison de leur emplacement géographique
  • .

  • un minimum de 1,1 million de dollars pour soutenir les voix sous-représentées, y compris (mais sans s'y limiter) les minorités autochtones, racialisées et de langue officielle

.

Ces nouveaux fonds s'appuieront sur le modèle réussi développé par CACTUS, ses partenaires et les journalistes dans la première phase du programme. Nous sommes enthousiastes à l'idée que CACTUS permettra à davantage de communautés d'accueillir un journaliste civique, de créer plus d'emplois pour les journalistes vidéo et de soutenir davantage les voix sous-représentées. Ces objectifs sont essentiels à la philosophie des médias communautaires, qui consiste à soutenir la diversité et le dialogue sur les affaires civiques, en particulier dans les communautés non desservies par d'autres médias.

Les formulaires de candidature pour les organisations de médias communautaires souhaitant accueillir un journaliste civique sont disponibles :

  • ici en format .pdf. Vous pouvez utiliser la fonction "Commentaire" d'Adobe reader pour taper directement sur le formulaire.

  • ici en format .odt (éditable). Si le formatage semble erratique sur votre ordinateur, comparez avec la version .pdf.

La date limite de candidature est le 15 octobre 2021.

Les articles créés dans le cadre de la première phase de l'IJL peuvent être vus et téléchargés sur PortailMedias.ca.

Si vous avez des questions sur le processus de candidature, nous organiserons une deuxième réunion zoom le lundi 4 octobreà 12 h HNE. Veuillez nous contacter à victorialjicactus@gmail.com ou Cathy Edwards @ (819) 456-2237 si vous souhaitez recevoir une invitation.

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CACTUS Submission to Broadcasting Review Panel

CACTUS' Submission to the Broadcasting Review Panel, tasked by government to prepare a report with recommendations for the revision of the Broadcasting Act.

“Community Element” All But Invisible in “Canada's communications future: Time to act”

CACTUS was disappointed to find almost no mention of the community element in the Canadian broadcasting system in the recently released report “Canada's communications future: Time to act” (aka the Yale Report). While Recommendation 52 maintains the existing definition of the Canadian broadcasting system as consisting of “public, private, and community elements”, there is no mention of the sector throughout the remaining 235 pages of the report, despite a full section devoted to the role and funding of public-sector media (the CBC), and considerable granularity regarding new funding and regulatory models to facilitate production for private media.

Everyone acknowledges the crisis in local news and information, yet the huge potential of the community sector to fill this gap—due to its lower cost structure and involvement by local stakeholders—is neither understood nor acknowledged.

This oversight is part of a long-standing trend. Neither the 2017 Creative Canada Policy Framework and Shattered Mirror reports made more than passing mentions of the community element.

Aside from the issue of local news and information, the report highlights the need to better serve indigenous Canadians, yet no mention is made of community media as the most cost-effective choice to reach most First Nations, many of whom may have only a few 100 or 1000 members. Community media trains community members in media production and gives them a voice and a platform, in the language of their choice. Via community media, indigenous communities can access the infrastructure and skills to participate in the digital economy.

The 1986 Report on the Task Force on Broadcasting which informed the 1991 Broadcasting Act recommended that community TV be separately licensed, to fulfill its potential as a platform for voices outside the mainstream, but the recommendation was never implemented, leaving the sector under the stewardship of the cable industry. That need is even stronger 34 years further on, in an environment of intense media-ownership concentration. The cable industry has shuttered the vast majority of the over 300 community stations that once existed. Canada is the ONLY nation in the world that put stewardship of the so-called “community element” in private hands.

The only reference in the Yale Report to the stranglehold that the CRTC has allowed cable companies to maintain on community TV is that half of the money (about $70 million) that was supposed to support communities to make their own audio-visual productions has already been siphoned off to support the Independent Local News Fund (the ILNF). Far from flagging this problem and the need for full funding for community media, the Yale report recommends at Recommendation 71 that more of this “levy” should be diverted to support local private news. The report doesn't acknowledge where the “levy” is coming from. The community element is just a black hole to be raided to support failing legacy news infrastructure. There is no vision to build more cost-effective, accountable and dynamic local institutions.

To read CACTUS' submission to the review process that preceded the Yale report, see

CACTUS Submission to the Broadcasting Review 2019

To hear an interview with Catherine Edwards, CACTUS' Executive Director, about the Yale report, as well as with Barry Rooke, the Executive Director of the National Community Radio Association, see:

Rabble Podcast with CACTUS and NCRA Executive Directors

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