FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Waterloo -- A substantial majority (73%) of Kamloops area
residents would like CBC to establish a local radio station to cover community
affairs and three-quarters (76%) hope their MP would champion a new station or
not oppose it. These findings
emerge from a new opinion survey commissioned by the broadcast watchdog group
Friends of Canadian Broadcasting.
On May 26, 2011, the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation announced
plans to introduce new radio services based in Kamloops to serve northern parts
of the southern Interior region in the autumn of 2012, but since then
threatened budget cuts have cast doubt on CBC's capacity to deliver on this
According to the survey, area residents who hope their MP will be a
champion and fight for the new service outnumber those who would rather their
MP support cuts to CBC's budget by a factor of two to one, while one-in-four
would prefer their MP to remain neutral.
The opinions of people in the region appear to be at odds with the plans
of the federal government.
"The federal government's plan to make a substantial cut of 10% or more
to the CBC's budget will have devastating
consequences for listeners and viewers and could well scuttle the promised new
service, an outcome that will clearly be off-side with the priorities of
residents of the area," said Morrison.
If more money is required by the CBC to deliver its promise,
most Kamloops area residents would support that.
More than half (57%) agree that "just as small provinces
have their own CBC stations, regions like mine should have their own stations,
even if it requires giving the CBC a bit more money". Only one-in-five (21%) disagree.
The survey found that two thirds (66%) of area residents
would counsel their MP to maintain or increase CBC funding. Only 17% would advise their MP to vote
to cut the CBC's funding.
"Cathy McLeod knows her constituents want her to support the
CBC and this survey shows that two-thirds (66%) of area
residents would like to see the CBC's budget increased or maintained and they
would like her to help make this happen," Morrison said.
Even though the Conservative Party promised
to maintain or increase CBC funding during the recent election campaign,
Heritage Minister James Moore is now talking about substantial cuts to the
national public broadcaster in the upcoming federal budget.
"The Conservatives promised time and again before, during and after the
election campaign to maintain or increase CBC funding. Breaking this promise will go against
the grain for most people in the Kamloops area and elsewhere in Canada,"
The survey also found that half (54%) of the region's residents agree
with a recent House of Commons Heritage Committee recommendation that annual
CBC funding should be increased from $33 per Canadian to $40, while 20% think
this recommendation should be rejected because it is too little.
Six-in-ten (64%) residents agree that the CBC provides good
coverage of local news and cultural events even without a local station, but
this level of agreement is significantly less than Canadians in other parts of
Minister Harper and his Conservative government carry a reputation for being
hostile to Canadian culture and the CBC. According to the survey, 60% think
Canada's level of public broadcaster funding is indicative of the federal
government's treatment of the cultural sector overall, and more than half of
area residents (53%) think Canada's level of public broadcaster funding is
insufficient to maintain a unique and vibrant Canadian identity and culture.
As for which political party is most trusted to protect the CBC, the
Conservative Party scores lowest at 15% followed by the Liberal Party at 27% with
the NDP being most trusted to protect the CBC by 58%.
Canada-wide, the CBC remains extremely popular with Canadians, who by
wide majorities give the CBC high marks for meeting its mandate to present
programs that inform, enlighten and entertain (77%) as well as its mandate to
serve the broadcasting needs of Canada's regions (68%).
The online survey of 2022 adult Canadians conducted from
November 4 to 10 has a margin of error of +/- 2.18%, 19 times out of 20. Kamloops region data are based on
a sample of 164 adults living in the area and have a margin of error of +/- 7.65%,
19 times out of 20.
The survey was designed and administered by political
scientists Peter Loewen, Assistant Professor at the University of Toronto and
Daniel Rubenson, Associate Professor at Ryerson University. Fieldwork for the
poll was done by Vision Critical on the Angus Reid Forum National Panel.
For information: Jim Thompson 613-447-9592
Jan 31, 2012 — Opinion Poll: Public opinion in Kamloops & the rest of Canada concerning the CBC
New opinion research on public reaction to a proposed a new radio service in the Interior BC region of Kamloops in the autumn of 2012.