08w36:1 Department of Culture Town Hall

by timothy. 1 Comment

I attended the town hall regarding the funding cuts at Toronto’s Theatre Centre on Wednesday night (original press release reproduced below from the Dpt of Culture website). I recorded it. Raw mp3 linked to below. – Timothy

Department of Culture

Audio Mp3 (72.5 MB)


Valuing Culture:


Wednesday, September 3, 2008, at 7 p.m.

The Theatre Centre
1087 Queen Street West, (South East Corner of Queen and Dovercourt)

For more details:

Who should come?
Everyone concerned about ensuring the social and cultural health and prosperity of our nation in the face of a Federal Government that is aggressively undermining the values that define Canada.

Who will be speaking?
•    Claire Hopkinson, Toronto Arts Council
•    Susan Swan, Former President, The Writers Union
•    Lisa Fitzgibbons, Executive Director, Documentary Organization of Canada
•    Naomi Klein, Writer and Political Analyst

What will we be doing?
Talking about the issues and proposing a comprehensive strategy for unseating key Conservatives in the imminent election, both in the GTA and across the country.

Why is this important?
Because cuts and policy changes are radically changing Canadian society.

This event is as much about funding cuts to women’s groups, youth training programs, harm reduction programs, food inspection, environmental organizations and health policy, as it is about cuts to arts funding. It should not be too much to expect a decent society to live in, one that prioritizes the welfare of it citizens before the wealth of a few. We are placing the issue of defunding arts and culture in relation to vast cuts to Canada’s social safety net made by a socially irresponsible Conservative government. We are bringing artists together to:

•    Lend our creative and organizational skills to the goal of unseating Conservative MPs from government;

•    Ensure that the electorate is intelligently informed about the policies and issues

•    Hold other parties and candidates to task for their social and cultural agendas;

•    Make alliances with other like-minded communities and organizations.

What’s the Background?
The recent wave of cuts by the Conservative government has sent shockwaves throughout an already resource-strapped arts community. Since taking power in 2006, the Conservative Government has eliminated almost $60 Million from Cultural and Heritage Granting Programs.

The most recent cuts:
•    The PromArt Program, $4.7 million (administered by the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade)
•    Trade Routes, $9 million, Department of Canadian Heritage
•    Stabilization Projects and Capacity Building, of the Canadian Arts and Heritage Sustainability Program, $3.4 Million
•    Canadian Independent Film and Video Fund, $1.5 million
•    National Training Program in the Film and Video Sector, $2.5 million
•    $300,000 to the Audio-Visual Preservation Trust of Canada, for programs archiving important film, television and musical recordings.
•    Canadian New Media Fund, $14.5 million

This meeting is intended to articulate the issues and organize a plan of action. If an election is called, we will establish swing teams to unseat Conservatives in every city across the country. If there is no election, the same teams will be organized to criticize, challenge and creatively pressure the government to change their policies

For more information or media inquiries contact:

Franco Boni, Izida Zorde, Heather Haynes, Darren O’Donnell, Gregory Elgstrand, Sara Graham, Graham F. Scott, Roy Mitchell, Naomi Campbell, Anthea Foyer, Michael Wheeler

The DEPARTMENT OF CULTURE wants you as a member. Anyone interested in organizing, doing research, writing, making graphics, videos, blitzing ridings, attending all-candidates meetings, marching in the streets or contributing funds should get in touch with: membership@departmentofculture.ca

Download this press release (PDF)

Téléchargez le communiqué de presse en français (PDF)

One Response to 08w36:1 Department of Culture Town Hall

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *