2. Current cultural affairs
Last update: November, 2008
Policy frameworks: The Department of Canadian Heritage identified five priorities in the Report on Plans and Priorities (2008-2009), which together are designed to help build a cohesive and creative Canada. Of these, two were previously committed, one was ongoing and two are new. According to the Treasury Board Secretariat, an ongoing priority is considered to have no end date whereas formerly committed priorities outlined in previous Reports are considered to have estimated end dates. The current planned priorities include the following:
Priority 1: Adapting Cultural Policy to Changing Technology and a Global Marketplace
The October 2007 Speech from the Throne noted the government of Canada's commitment to improve the protection of cultural and intellectual property rights, including copyright reform. Key initiatives include: implementing supplementary funding to the Arts Presentation Programme for professional arts festivals through programming that combines and complements paid admission events with free or low-cost events, programming that engages local professional artists, extending programming outreach to other communities, initiatives that reach out to youth and other under-served populations, active outreach to schools, community centers or other venues where professional artists engage with the community, and partnerships with other community-based organisations over a period from 2008 to 2011; responding to the evolving Canadian broadcasting environment through collaboration and leveraged partnerships to ensure that the Canadian broadcasting system remains relevant in a global digital environment; adapting the Canadian copyright regime to address domestic and international challenges through legislation amendment; reviewing the Canadian Periodical Policy and redesigning its support framework in 2008-09 and implementing changes in 2009-10; and in support of the program activity to preserve Canada's heritage, moving forward on the Canadian Museum for Human Rights which will be the first new national museum to be established (by legislation) in Canada in 40 years. Legislation to that effect received Royal Assent on 10 March 2008 (see chapter 4.2.1).
Priority 2: Promoting Canada through Community Engagement and Major Events
Key initiatives include: Supporting the 400th anniversary in 2008 of the founding of Quebec City; in support of the program activity of access to Canada's cultural life, implementing the Building Communities through the Arts and Heritage Programme for local community festivals and commemorations (including the Budget 2007 announcement of CAD 30 million per year over two years to encourage Canadian involvement in their communities through the expression, celebration and preservation of local arts and heritage); supporting Canadian participants at Expo 2010 in Shanghai; supporting celebrations marking the 150th anniversary of the Crown Colony of British Columbia; supporting activities related to the 250th anniversary of representative government in Nova Scotia; developing next steps for the Community Historical Recognition Programme and the National Recognition Programme; and moving forward on the Global Centre for Pluralism.
Priority 3: Delivering New Support for Official Languages
The 2006 Speech from the Throne recognised that "linguistic duality is a tremendous asset for the country," while Budget 2007 announced significant funding dedicated to supporting official language minority communities and promoting linguistic duality, as well as for events surrounding the 400th anniversary of Québec City. The government plans to implement new support for Official Languages pursuant to a Budget 2007 announcement of CAD 15 million per year over the next two years for that purpose.
Priority 4: Investing in Canadian Sport
Canada's achievements as a sporting nation contribute to the strength of the Canadian identity as well as to the economic, social, and cultural fabric of the nation. Key initiatives include investing in athlete support, strategic opportunities and promotional activities in preparation for the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games in Vancouver-Whistler, British Columbia and implementing the Canadian Heritage Sport Fund. These initiatives also include support to community sport participation in sports.
Priority 5: Strengthening Management Practices
The Department of Canadian Heritage is reviewing and continually adjusting its corporate management infrastructure and its governance structure to respond to new requirements regarding results-based management, comptrollership, risk management, internal audit and evaluation, service delivery, and public service renewal and modernisation. Extensive redesign of the Department's Program Activity Architecture (PAA) and Performance Measurement Framework (PMF) is also currently under way, to further enhance governance and accountability through informed and transparent policy development, decision-making and risk management.
The Department of Canadian Heritage's Program Activity Architecture (effective as of 1 April 2008) is anchored by two strategic outcomes: Canadians express and share their diverse cultural experiences with each other and the world; and Canada is an inclusive society built on intercultural understanding and citizen participation. These two strategic outcomes are supported by seven programme activities: Creation of Canadian content and performance excellence, sustainability of cultural expression and participation, preservation of Canada's heritage, access to Canada's culture, promotion of inter-cultural understanding, community development and capacity-building, and participation in community and civic life. Further discussion of selected initiatives is contained in subsequent chapters of this Profile although it should be noted here that sports initiatives also complement certain cultural initiatives in regard to the strategic outcomes and some programme activities.
More generally, in financial terms, planned expenditures relative to the foregoing strategic outcomes and programme activities are slated to drop from just under CAD 1.4 billion in 2008-09 to CAD 985 million in 2010-11, a reduction of 29.4% (see chapter 7.1.3). The bulk of these departmental cutbacks are reflected in the CAD 342 million in "sunsetted" programme spending during the period 2008-2011, including Tomorrow Starts Today (arts and heritage), Canadian Television Fund, Community Historical Recognition Programme, Urban Multipurpose Aboriginal Youth Centres, Katimavik, the Vancouver-Whistler Olympics and the 400th anniversary of the founding of Quebec City. Of these, the two largest are Tomorrow Starts Today and the Canadian Television Fund (see chapter 7.2.2 and chapter 3.5.1 respectively). Cutbacks in the department's full-time human resource equivalents are planned to reach 280 from 2 354 in 2008-0 to 2 074 in 2010-11, or a planned decline of 11.9%.
Legislative renewal: Examples of recent cultural legislation include, inter alia, the enactment of the Library and Archives of Canada Act (2004) in order to join together the National Archives and the National Library of Canada under a single institution, Library and Archives Canada. In 2007, in cooperation with Industry Canada, a legislative package for copyright remained under development in order to ensure that the economic and moral rights of creators and other rights holders are recognised and protected while also meeting the needs of users and addressing digital copyright issues, thereby allowing Canada to consider ratifying the 1996 WIPO Internet treaties, namely the WIPO Copyright Treaty (WCT) and the WIPO Performances and Phonograms Treaty (WPPT). In June 2007, an Act to amend the Criminal Code for unauthorised recording of a movie in motion picture theatres was enacted based on Bill C-59. In 2008-09, the Department will draft amendments to the Copyright Act which will provide sufficient copyright protection and fair compensation for copyright holders and promote lawful access to works in accordance with international standards. This long over-due revision to copyright legislation is planned to be carried out "as soon as is reasonably possible, depending on the legislative calendar." Amendments to the Copyright Act were introduced in Parliament in June 2008 but were not enacted owing to the federal election held on 14 September 2008.
Other aspects of legislation include reviews of existing legislation through the Standing Committees of Parliament, particularly the Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage. The following selected list of Bills, studies or enquiries heard by the Committee, as well as government responses thereto, in recent years included: Assistance programme for exhibits and festivals: Bill C-327, An Act to amend the Broadcasting Act (reduction of violence in television broadcasts); Canadian Feature Film Industry; Canadian Independent Film and Video Fund - Mandate and Priorities; Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) - Mandate and Priorities; Follow up of Canadian Feature Film Industry Study; Full investigation of the Role of a Public Broadcaster in the 21st Century; Needs of remote Francophone organisations; Policies and Priorities of the Department of Canadian Heritage; Present Mandate of the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation; Statutory review of Canada Travelling Exhibitions Indemnification Act; Study on the Future of the Canadian Television Fund; Study related to Canadian museums; and Telefilm Canada - Mandate and Priorities.
Departmental assessment / Programme renewal: Includes ensuring the integrity of existing programmes, assessing departmental programmes in the context of changing priorities and refining cultural objectives. Programme Activity Architecture (PAA), which provides a list of programme activities and establishes links between programme activities, strategic results, resource allocation and the accountability structure, is the principal tool for departmental planning and assessment and performance measurement, including Part III of the Report on Plans and Priorities (2008-09 Estimates) and the Departmental Performance Report(2006-07).
In addition, departmental evaluations are undertaken every 3 to 4 years. For example, in 2003-04, the Auditor General reported on the protection of cultural heritage involving the Department of Canadian Heritage, the National Archives of Canada, the National Library of Canada, the Parks Canada Agency and the Treasury Board Secretariat. In 2005, the Auditor General of Canada reported on the performance of federal programmes in support of the cultural industries notably the Canadian Television Fund and Telefilm Canada. (Report of the Auditor General of Canada, November 2005). In 2006, the following evaluation reports were released, inter alia, on: Canada New Media Fund, Evaluation of Atlantic Canada Cultural and Economic Partnership (ACCEP), Multiculturalism Programme, Canada Magazine Fund, and Canada Travelling Exhibitions Indemnification Programme. In 2007, the Community Participation Programme and the Canadian Volunteerism Initiative were evaluated and subsequently discontinued (see below).
In regard to programme renewal, one of the most significant during this decade was the investment of CAD 500 million over three years in new support of Canadian arts and culture (announced in 2001 under the rubric"Tomorrow Starts Today" or TST). The TST investments continue to target all aspects of the creative process by encouraging excellence among artists, promoting arts and heritage among the general population and providing cultural industries with the means and capacity to prosper (see chapter 7.2.2). The TST has since been renewed until 2010 although as noted previously, it is included amongst those initiatives to be "sunsetted" by the end of 2009-10. As part of an earlier Expenditure Review, recent examples of discontinued programmes include: the Canadian Volunteerism Initiative, the Acknowledgement, Commemoration and Education Programme, the Community Participation Programme and the Court Challenges Programme.
Public outreach: The Public and Regional Affair's Sector is designed to allow the public to understand the department's programmes. It operates a public opinion research capacity as well as coordinates the department's regional offices. The Department provides services to Canadians from 22 points of service located in Gatineau-Ottawa and in five regions: West, Prairies and North, Ontario, Quebec, and Atlantic. The Sector is also responsible for major events and celebrations through its State Ceremonial and Corporate Events, Celebration, Commemoration and Learning and International Expositions Directorates. The department organises four celebrations through the Celebrate Canada Programme: National Aboriginal Day (June 21), Saint-Jean-Baptiste Day (June 24), Canadian Multiculturalism Day (June 27) and Canada Day (July 1). Examples of the commemoration component include A Canada of Prosperity and Sharing in 2006which marked the 40th anniversary of the Canada Pension Plan and Democratic Canada in 2007, when Canada celebrates the 140th anniversary of Confederation, as well as the 25th anniversary of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. The Department of Canadian Heritage also continues to work with Portfolio partners through an Outreach Policy Cluster to develop an integrated and collaborative outreach approach critical to building connections among Canadians through more active inter-cultural understanding and dialogue. The Department of Canadian Heritage extends its public outreach through Culture.ca - Canada's Cultural Gateway established in 2003 and the Canadian Cultural Observatory launched in November 2003 (see chapter 3.1). In 2007, the Department of Canadian Heritage conducted an in-depth review of the funding, relevance and performance of all its programmes and spending to ensure results and value for money from programs that are a priority for Canadians. Pursuant to this review, the government of Canada eliminated the Observatory / Culturescope.ca and Culture.ca. Original programme objectives have been fulfilled in regards to the Observatory / Culturescope.ca and Culture.ca. The digital space has evolved tremendously so that the domestic and international community now has a wider array of interactive and networking vehicles and research tools available.
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Last update: November, 2008
While Canada has always been at the vanguard of developing and accessing new technologies such as cable and satellite, their rapid succession and use in creating, transmitting and receiving cultural content is both destabilising and invigorating at the same time. New technologies allow new players to enter the cultural marketplace, increase competition among traditional players and expose vast amounts of digital content to interested consumers. In order to remain competitive, cultural industries face the challenge of using new technologies to develop new products and accessible platforms to maintain overall corporate market shares in both traditional and new media modes. The introduction of new communication technologies in Canada has often complemented rather than displace existing media and cultural formats. In light of the growing impact and growth of new technologies on the cultural industries, an internal DCH task force on new technologies was set up in 2005 with a two-year timetable. The CRTC completed its report on new technologies in 2006 (see chapter 3.5.1) and is currently engaged in a New Media Project Initiative on the implications of new media for content and access, the two central policy and regulatory concerns in broadcasting. The key questions from the perspective of the CRTC are, "Is it necessary to regulate commercial broadcasting delivered over the Internet and mobile devices? If so, is it possible and how should it be done?"
Examples of policy related issues identified and addressed by the government include:
- the effect of growing levels of time-use and consumption of Internet content on the traditional patterns of time-use and consumption of cultural content;
- questions of privacy and pornography;
- limitations on regulatory application to the Internet including broadcast streaming;
- copyright protection in the digital environment;
- bridging the digital divide between rich and poor and well- and poorly-educated citizens; and
- supporting sustainable on-line business models for the cultural industries.
The Internet exemplifies the impact of new technologies with its rapid creation of new opportunities for the dissemination of cultural and other forms of content. Creators, producers and distributors of Canadian content are pressed to secure prominent places on the Internet in the face of rapid, massive and global information flows (Internet participation trends are discussed in chapter 6.2).
Cultural policies have been influenced by constant technological innovation providing the opportunity of expanding content diversity and consumer access. Some current initiatives, pursuant to recommendations of the influential Task Force on Digitisation in the late 1990s, include:
- the connectedness agenda whereby the federal government works with the provincial governments to ensure that every school across Canada will be linked to the Internet during this decade;
- Canadian Heritage Information Network (CHIN), which operates an on-line "virtual" museum with information on museum holdings (see chapter 3.1);
- Canadian Cultural Observatory, which was launched in November 2003 and linked to a Cultural Portal and Government-On-Line (see chapter 2.5.3); and
- Canadian Digital Content Initiative, which includes the Canadian Memory Fund, the Partnerships Fund and various other DCH programmes, supports the availability of Canadian cultural content on the Internet (see chapter 3.5.1). In addition to CHIN and the Virtual Museum, heritage institutions (archives, libraries, museums) are at forefront of making heritage content available online (see chapter 3.1).
The Canada Council for the Arts supports artists making creative use of interactive information and communications technologies and / or audio production technologies. Priority is given to proposals from artists whose work demonstrates the development of an individual style or expressive approach, as well as a commitment to questioning and expanding the art form. Recent examples of artists' work in new media include, but are not limited to:
- artworks created with information and communications technologies;
- installations and performances integrating information and communications technologies;
- artworks created through a creative application of communications networks;
- web art;
- artists' applications of robotics, software design leading to the production of an original artwork;
- creation of a prototype for use in / as an original artwork;
- artworks created using artificial intelligence or artificial life software; and
- visual music performances and / or installations (audio coupled with video or digital visuals).
While the Department of Canadian Heritage does not have many mechanisms to directly support film and video artists in the media arts tradition (media arts includes film, video, audio and new media), it does provide support to Canada Council's Media Arts Section's programme. The Department's Arts Presentation Canada Programme and Cultural Spaces Canada Programme contribute to access by Canadians to media artists and works through the funding of Media Arts Festivals and by contributing to the improvement of creation / production, and dissemination and presentation spaces. Canadian Culture Online's Canada New Media and New Media Research Networks Funds and New Media R&D Initiative provide support to small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) active in the cultural new media sector and not-for-profit arts and cultural organisations.
Last update: November, 2008
Cross-border intercultural dialogue and co-operation
Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE): In 2006, Canada participated in the OSCE Tolerance Implementation Meeting on Promoting Inter-Cultural, Inter-Religious and Inter-Ethnic Understanding, held June 12-13, 2006 in Almaty, Kazakhstan. The meeting focused on the role of governments and civil society in creating a context for inter-cultural, inter-religious and inter-ethnic understanding, with a view to ensuring inclusiveness and respect for diversity. During the meeting, Canada shared good practices on multiculturalism and social cohesion policies.
Canadian International Model United Nations (CANIMUN): Both PCH and DFAIT support the Conference, a four-day bilingual event held in Ottawa annually. Organised by the United Nations Association in Canada (UN-Canada) in partnership with DFAIT and PCH, CANIMUN offers a unique model for post-secondary level delegates from across Canada and around the world.
The Youth on the Move Programme (DFAIT): provides opportunities to both young Canadians and Europeans to work or travel on both sides of the Atlantic. By gaining exposure to new cultures, values, ideas, languages and ways of life, youth gain the kind of experience that promotes knowledge and skills to work in the global knowledge-based economy. The programme's Youth and Academic Mobility Unit for Europe has a mandate to promote youth and academic mobility programmes to young people in Canada and in Europe between the ages of 18 and 35. DFAIT manages more than seventy bilateral and multilateral International Youth Programmes in 54 countries and organisations. These programmes, agreed upon on a reciprocal basis, facilitated more than 56 000 exchanges worldwide in 2006.
Intercultural dialogue: actors, strategies, programmes
Intercultural dialogue (ICD) is central to the evolving mandate of the Department of Canadian Heritage and theHeritage portfolio. ICD effectively joins up the traditional ideas of culture as creativity and of citizenship as democracy and is increasingly perceived as potentially an effective tool to facilitate the effective development and operation of cultural and civic policies and programmes. ICD also helps to foster the education and transmission of values that serve as the foundation for making things work and making them work equitably and transparently.
The scope of ICD is as complex and vast as are the roles of the Department. The development of ICD calls for a more systematic merger of interests and cross-sectoral communications and partnerships, upgraded linkages between cultural diplomacy and trade, international cultural promotion and cooperation, multiculturalism and cultural policies, and fundamental values and best practices. ICD is an important and necessary step in the cultural and civic continuum from creator to consumer and conserver and also a process that complements existing outreach activities that reach marginalised minorities often subject to chronic disparities. As with cultural diversity, intercultural dialogue will be reflected, over time, in policy and programme development and evaluation, the identification and analysis of horizontal and transnational issues such as identity and belonging, social and economic impacts, and the "cross-overs" between cultural and civic participation and networking. In its broadest context, intercultural dialogue refers to purposeful connections among populations in Canada to foster an ongoing exchange of views and perceptions and a common exposure of the population to the complex diversity of cultural and civic input represented by the public agenda. In its more restricted sense, ICD is exemplified by events or activities that bring cultures together in respect and tolerance.
For example, cultural and intercultural festivals provide opportunities for such dialogue, which, include inclusive cultural repertoires audiences. An example of inter-cultural festivals in Canada is ICA FolkFest, Victoria, BC's inter-cultural arts festival, which was founded in 1971 to showcase the skills, talents and contributions of immigrants and minority communities. It has evolved into a unique urban arts festival: amateur performers and emerging artists share the stage with award-winning musicians and dancers from around the world, and Vancouver Island's culinary arts scene is highlighted alongside music, dance, theatre, film and circus arts.
Opportunities for enhanced dialogue also exist in relation to the written and Internet-based press, broadcasting and cable television, feature films, music and sound recordings, community and inter-community interaction, e.g. cultural tourism, twinned cities and youth exchanges. Canadian Heritage also supports the view that international amateur sporting events provide opportunities to promote intercultural dialogue and understanding, through major multi-sport events like the Commonwealth, Francophonie Games and the Olympic and Paralympic Games and related programmes like the Cultural Olympiad. Some examples of activities involving enhanced intercultural dialogue include the promotion of both cultural and intercultural understanding, community development and capacity-building, and community cultural and civic participation. This dialogue in Canada includes the promotion of linguistic duality involving the official languages, which has resulted in an increase in the proportion of bilingual (French and English) Canadians from 12% in 1971 to 18% in 2001. The proportion of young Canadians aged 15 to 19 who self-declare as being bilingual in Canada's two official languages rose from 16.4% in 1971 to 24% in 2001. Almost two-thirds of Canadians living in a majority situation consider Canada's linguistic duality to be a source of cultural enrichment in 2006. Intercultural dialogue is also growing in respect to non-official languages used by recent immigrants (see chapter 2.5.4).
Examples of good practices in the promotion of intercultural understanding which is basic to intercultural dialogue are drawn from initiatives and components of the Official Languages Programme (see chapter 2.5.4) and the Canadian Multiculturalism Programme (see chapter 2.6). In regard to the former, dialogue and understanding are enhanced by second-language learning agreements between the federal and provincial governments through the Enhancement of Official Languages Programme. The current objective is to double the proportion of Canadian youth between 15 and 19 years old who have a working knowledge of both official languages.
The Multiculturalism Programme places particular emphasis on the removal of barriers that prevent full participation of all Canadians in Canadian society. For the purposes of this chapter, it is important to note the connection between multiculturalism and cultural development and between civic and cultural participation. The link between intercultural understanding and the concomitant removal or reduction of impediments to the enjoyment of cultural and civic participation is intercultural dialogue which is, in turn, the key to advancing social cohesion (see chapter 2.7).
Last update: November, 2008
The role of intercultural education in assisting the process of social cohesion in a democratic context is an important aspect of a state's response to diversity. Moreover, intercultural educational measures, which include interculturally-educated teachers, as well as multilingual policies, which attempt to improve intercultural relations and non-centric curricula, help create inclusive, stable and peaceful and democratic polities (Gundara 2001 / 02). While intercultural education is not generally part of the Federal government's cultural policy mandate, there are growing numbers of government initiatives in regard to intercultural education, which is often defined as multicultural education. Some examples of such involvement at the Federal levels include policies, programmes and studies funded by the Department of Canadian Heritage and Citizenship and Immigration Canada on aspects and instruments of change in relation to racism and discrimination, including Aboriginal and multiethnic groups and citizens, resource lists of educational materials, teachers' guides for primary, secondary and university education, employment equity programmes and human rights education.
At the provincial level, a wide range of education studies, policies and programmes exist such as Quebec's School Guide on Intercultural Education, Aboriginal education directorates in the provincial ministries of education, distance education curricula, studies and curricula on heritage languages as both subject and language of instruction, online educational resources, and parental involvement in educational curricula and life-long learning. In respect to NGOs, studies and advocacy are conducted by organisations as the Canadian Council on Multicultural and Intercultural Education, the Canadian Anti-Racist Education and Research Society, the Canadian Race Relations Foundation, the Coalition for the Advancement of Aboriginal Studies, the B'nai Brith League of Human rights, the Bronfman Foundation, various Teachers Federations, the SchoolNet Grassroots Programme with school Internet projects, and the Canadian Ethnocultural Council (Education Indicators in Canada: Report of the Pan-Canadian Education Indicators Programme, Statistics Canada 2007).
Last update: November, 2008
The early history of cultural policy in Canada used to focus primarily on broadcasting, the "high arts" and heritage in which the federal government has been and remains actively involved for many years. With the rapid growth of the cultural industries, particularly evident over the last forty years, federal intervention in the cultural sector was broadened considerably. Individual components of the cultural sector including the media received support given their perceived importance in producing and distributing Canadian cultural content. While the precise nature of federal cultural support programmes and regulatory regimes varies considerably, the trend in cultural policy in Canada is towards a more holistic approach from creation and production, through distribution, exhibition and marketing, to consumption, participation and preservation. The media, both print forms and electronic media, are essential vehicles for the distribution and consumption of cultural content in Canada.
In regard to anti-trust measures to prevent media concentration, media firms, like other commercial entities in Canada, are subject to the Competition Act (1985), a law of general application. While the government recognises the importance of ensuring a diversity of sources of news and information, the Competition Act (1985) is neither intended nor designed to address non-economic issues. The role of merger review under the Act is to preserve competition in all industries, including the media sector. It is important to both the stakeholders and the economy as a whole that economic competition is preserved.
On the other hand, based on its authority under the Broadcasting Act (1991), the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) is mandated to monitor and regulate the broadcasting systems, and to pursue social, cultural, and economic goals which complement the Competition Bureau's application of economic criteria in reviewing mergers. Moreover, while legislation and regulations do not prohibit broadcasters from purchasing newspapers and vice-versa, the CRTC has imposed safeguards on a case-by-case basis as a condition of licence. It has also established maximum thresholds regarding the number of radio and television stations an owner may operate in a specific market through its radio and television policies.
In regard to training programmes to sensitise journalists to culture-related issues and conflicts in order to ensure diversity of views, the government indirectly supports creators through the Canada Magazine Fund, particularly through the Support for Editorial Content components. The government of Canada respects the independence of the press and supports the ability of journalism associations to direct and manage journalists' professional development. The roles played by media and culture also affect the relations between identity and diversity. Some argue that identity helps to shape the form and frequency of cultural engagement and participation. Others contend that culture shapes identity and that consequently, there is a possibility that a dominant world culture could reduce or marginalise multiple domestic identities. As part of its research programme, the Department of Canadian Heritage is beginning to explore the interactive synergies and mutual impacts between culture and identity and between culture and citizenship.
The government of Canada employs the term, "diversity" in positive, nation reaffirming terms in its public declarations. Canada believes that countries must have the capacity to promote cultural diversity by:
- acknowledging and treating cultural diversity as a public good and ensuring that citizens have the opportunity to make their voices and opinions heard in a changing world;
- striking a balance between remaining open to other world cultures and promoting local, regional and national cultural expressions; and
- sharing their cultural perspectives so that each country's stories and experiences contribute to enriching world culture.
Diversity, including cultural diversity, is viewed as a social strength or asset in Canada manifested in values of recognition and acceptance of difference, compromise, negotiation and peaceful resolution of conflict, and in the accommodation of and openness to the different practices and values of "the other". Diversity of cultural expression arguably promotes creativity and should promote new ways of understanding complex issues, global connections with countries or heritage of origin, and the building of new social and cultural capital in support of economic values such as skill development and enhanced productivity.
Canada's official goals of diversity encompass a wide range of anticipated and achieved results that reflect its multicultural population, two official languages and recognition of the unique place of Aboriginal peoples including their rights, cultures and languages. In order that these goals stand out and receive public recognition and support, diversity is focused by the application of a "diversity lens" to many cultural policy initiatives. The diversity lens helps to assess policy objectives and outcomes against the capacity of policy instruments to achieve overarching goals of inclusion, equality of opportunity, community strength, social cohesion, citizen engagement and attachment to Canada, intrinsic to the Canadian diversity model. The diversity lens may also help ensure that in developing resources to promote the broad public interest, there are not unintended negative impacts on cultural minorities.
Canada has a long history of relying on communications media as a tool for nation-building and cultural development. For example, the Broadcasting Act (1991) states, "The Canadian broadcasting system should ... through its programming and ... employment opportunities ... serve the needs and interests and reflect the circumstances and aspirations of Canadian men, women and children, including equal rights, the linguistic duality and multicultural and multiracial nature of Canadian society and the special place of Aboriginal peoples within that society." In 1999, the Commission introduced a new policy for television, which is still in effect, stating: "... all conventional television licensees ... (will) make specific commitments to initiatives designed to ensure that they contribute to a system that more accurately reflects the presence of cultural and racial minorities and Aboriginal peoples in the communities they serve." (CRTC Ethnic Broadcasting Policy 1999).
Media transactions in Canada require a review process by the CRTC and the Competition Bureau, in accordance with current rules and legislation. Currently, the CRTC evaluates transactions based on its common ownership policy. For television, the policy generally prohibits a television licensee from owning more than one station operating in one language in the same market. For radio, the policy prohibits a licensee from owning more than three stations in one language in a market, and in large markets, no more than four. While the CRTC does not currently have specific policies in place that limit a single entity from owning radio, television and print assets in the same market, when evaluating proposed ownership transactions, the CRTC generally considers:
- concentration of ownership, which is the level of market presence that a single entity could have in terms of number of outlets or market share (revenues or audiences). The CRTC considers the overall public interest to ensure effective competition and a diversity of voices, and has from time to time required the divestiture of specific undertakings or imposed conditions of license. For example, in 2007 CTVglobemedia was denied its proposal to acquire the CHUM City TV stations because of concentration of ownership concerns.
- cross-media ownership (also called horizontal integration), which is the ownership by a single entity of several types of media outlets (television, radio, print) in a given market. The CRTC has in the past imposed special conditions on licensees to ensure that separate and independent news management and presentation structures are maintained. For example, when Quebecor acquired TQS in 1997, it was required to submit a professional code of conduct which outlined the structural separation of news gathering activities as well as the separation of news management and decision making on content and presentation.
- vertical integration, which is where broadcasting, production and distribution undertakings are commonly owned by a single entity. In these situations, the CRTC applies appropriate safeguards either broadly by regulation or on a case-by-case basis in the form of conditions of license or expectations. For example, when a broadcaster is affiliated with a production company, the CRTC has often imposed limits on the amount of programming that may be used from the affiliated production company. Similarly, when a BDU owns a digital specialty service, the CRTC has specified that the BDU must carry 5 non-affiliated stations for every affiliated service.
In the wake of a string of media transactions, the CRTC announced in March 2007 that it would begin examining its ownership policies as they relate to the Broadcasting Act's objective of ensuring that the broadcasting system provides Canadians with a diversity of voices. In September 2007, the CRTC held a public hearing to further examine the issue. Over 160 interveners submitted comments to the process, including individual Canadians, large and small broadcasters, broadcasting distribution undertakings; independent production companies, interested associations, unions and guilds, and community radio and television groups, and approximately 50 interveners appeared at the hearing. The issues raised during the process focused on three main areas: plurality of commercial editorial voices, diversity of programming choices, and safeguards for journalistic content in situations where different media outlets in a given market are controlled by a single entity. The CRTC released the results of its examination in January 2008 based on the following revised policy framework which includes:
- the reaffirmation of common ownership policies governing the number of conventional television and radio stations a person may control in the same market;
- the establishment of a new policy restricting cross-media ownership in order to maintain a plurality of editorial voices - under the new approach, a person or entity may only control two of the following media that serve the same market, namely a local radio station, local television station or local newspaper;
- the imposition of limits on the ownership of broadcasting licences to ensure that one party does not control more than 45% of the total television audience share as a result of a transaction; and
- a refusal to approve transactions between companies that distribute television services (such as cable or satellite companies) that would result in one person effectively controlling the delivery of programming in a market.
The foregoing decisions apply only to private broadcasters but the CRTC will consider the contribution public broadcasters and community broadcasters make to the diversity of voices in during separate proceedings planned for 2008.
CBC / Radio-Canada reflects the special role of a national public broadcaster that operates in two official languages across the country. Official-language minority media provide local community content to both Anglophone and Francophone minority communities. The media constitute key tools in promoting cross-cultural understanding and exchanging good practices in the fight against racism. For example, the Northern Broadcast Access Programme and the Northern Distribution Programme of the Department of Canadian Heritage, as well as several Portfolio agency programmes, promote the production and distribution of radio and television programming in Aboriginal languages, especially in three Arctic territories and the northern portions of seven provinces. Other examples include Arts Presentation Canada, Cultural Spaces Canada, the National Arts Training Contribution Programme and the Canadian Arts and Heritage Sustainability Programme which monitor arts-related results and evaluate the adequacy of the process for culturally diverse populations, including Aboriginal applicants (see chapter 7.2.2). The Publications Assistance Programme has also taken measures to improve access to ethno-cultural magazines and non-daily newspapers. The Multiculturalism Programme of the Department of Canadian Heritage encourages, supports and facilitates fair representation of ethnic minorities in the media by initiating community projects and collaborating with media associations in the area of diversity representation and positive portrayal.
The importance of relating the media as communication tools with privileged ties to diverse audiences was one of the rationales for conducting the Ethnic Diversity Survey in Canada, which the Department of Canadian Heritage helped to finance. Released in 2003, this Survey was based on responses from 42 500 respondents that focused on ethnicity conducted in Canada (Statistics Canada - Canadian Heritage collaboration). It used ethnic self-definition exploring both ethnic origin and ethnic identity in relation to place of birth, religion, language and population group (visible minority). It was also inter-generational by exploring and comparing the backgrounds of respondents with those of their parents and grandparents. The Ethnic Diversity Survey looked at questions of participation and discrimination and showed that data from the 2001 Census of Population make its clear that Canada is a very diverse society, and that this diversity is likely to increase in the years to come. It also helped the Multiculturalism Programme show that the government of Canada has a key role to play in ensuring that government policies, programmes and services are adapted to the needs of an increasingly diverse population. The results also showed that immigrants were more likely than people born in Canada to report a strong sense of belonging to their ethnic or cultural group. It also found that the participation of immigrants in all types of groups and organisations increased with time spent in Canada.
The growing importance of diversity in Canada can be assessed according to trends in the changing composition of the arts labour force. There are 131 000 artists in Canada. (Statistics Canada Census of Population 2001) Recent findings show a rapid increase of visible minority artists who are growing in number at a rate more than twice as fast as all artists, although the visible minority artists make up a smaller per cent of all artists (8.9%) than do visible minorities in the total population (over 14%). Visible minority and Aboriginal artists earn substantially less than other labour force workers while immigrant artists earn less than other immigrants and all Canadian workers although the difference in earnings is on a par with other artists (Hill Strategies Diversity in Canada's Arts Labour Force 2005).
Diversity research is becoming more prevalent in Canada as the phenomenon itself grows. The Department of Canadian Heritage organised a forum in 2005 to assess the future demographic landscape of Canada and released a Report, Serving Canada's Multicultural Population for the Future: Canada 2017. Papers were produced at the forum on labour market barriers, access to health and social services, the social geography of cities, the representation of visible minorities in public institutions, and the generational challenges of diverse families. The media play a prominent role in each of these and other relevant areas. Media diversity promotes the development of synergies between a multicultural society and cultural creativity can be fostered and celebrated.
Last update: November, 2008
Language issues in Canada refer primarily to the country's two official languages, English and French. Pursuant to recommendations of the Report of the Royal Commission on Bilingualism and Biculturalism (1969), Parliament adopted the first Official Languages Act (1969), which extended to all federal institutions. The current official languages policy is reflected in the:
- Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms (1982): Under Section 16, English and French are proclaimed official languages of Canada and of the province of New Brunswick. Official bilingualism applies to legislative debates and proceedings, statutes, records and journals in federal and New Brunswick courts, and the provision of services and communications with the public. Quebec is officially French and all other provinces and territories in Canada are unilingual English. Minority educational rights for children to receive primary and secondary schooling in the language of the official language minority population of a province are guaranteed under the Charter.
- Official Languages Act (1988): promotes linguistic duality in Canadian society and supports development of official language minority communities in Canada. Sections 41 and 42 of the Act commit the federal government to enhance the vitality of the official language minority communities of Canada, foster the full recognition and use of both official languages and promote a co-ordinated approach among federal institutions.
Through its responsibilities under the Official Languages Act, Canadian Heritage supports the Minister of Canadian Heritage, Status of Women and Official Languages, also responsible for La Francophonie, in facilitating the enhancement of Canada's two official languages and supporting official language minority communities. The Department of Canadian Heritage also encourages and promotes a coordinated approach to the implementation of Section 41 of the Official Languages Act (1985). Since 1994, Section 41 has been the subject of an annual report by the Department of Canadian Heritage on the implementation of the Act by 27 designated federal institutions. Through the Development of Official Language Communities Programme, the Department of Canadian Heritage works with partners to increase the overall proportion of eligible students enrolled in minority language schools in Canada (see chapter 4.1.8). Approximately 25% of some CAD 2.8 billion in federal cultural spending in 2000 was allocated to French-language cultural expression. The CBC / Radio-Canada, Canada's national public broadcaster is a major contributor to bilingualism in the provision of cultural goods and services and also broadcasts in 8 Aboriginal languages in northern Canada. Of a total CBC / Radio-Canada budget in 2005-06 (operating expenditures include television, radio, corporate management, amortisation of property and equipment, specialty services and distribution and affiliates) of CAD 1.704 billion in 2005-06, French language television accounted for 24% and French language radio for 9%. The CBC also operates several French-language specialty channels on digital cable and satellite.
The Canada Council for the Arts, Telefilm Canada, the National Film Board and Canadian Heritage operate programmes that provide financial support for official minority language writers and publishers, musicians and other performers, museums and galleries and film makers. About fifty percent of Canadian Culture Online funds are dedicated to the development of French-language content on the Internet. Approximately one-third of the Canadian Television Fund flows to French- language productions and the other two-thirds to English language productions. The National Arts Centre operates theatre programmes in English and French. In 2003-04, the Department of Canadian Heritage renewed its Development of Official Language Communities and Enhancement of Official Languages Programmes. The Department of Canadian Heritage supports provincial and territorial second-language learning programmes, which reach 2.5 million Canadians. The government also works closely with over 150 NGOs to promote Canada's two official languages.
In November 2006, the government responded to the 6th Report of the Standing Senate Committee on Official Languages: French-language Education in a Minority Setting: a Continuum from Early Childhood to the Postsecondary Level. The federal government is committed to working with the provinces and territories to support and improve the educational opportunities and outcomes for all Canadians living in minority language communities. It is primarily focussed on early learning and childcare, primary and secondary education and postsecondary education. This undertaking has resulted in an investment of approximately CAD 5 billion over the past 35 years. Students from Francophone minorities now reach parity with those from the Anglophone majority (outside Quebec) with respect to the percentage of postsecondary graduates within one and a half generations. According to an Ipsos-Reid Survey in 2004, French immersion students have greater awareness of the benefits of linguistic duality especially fluency in both languages.
In June 2008, the government of Canada released the Roadmap for Linguistic Duality in Canada 2008-2013 in furtherance of which a government-wide investment of CAD 1.1 billion over five years to encourage linguistic duality among all Canadians and to support official- language communities in health, justice, immigration, economic development, and arts and culture. The Roadmap is designed to support the cultural vitality of communities by emphasising the value of increased knowledge of English and French and access to services for both official-language communities. It will target youth in particular and will be implemented by 13 federal departments and agencies.
French language development is also enhanced through the following instruments (other than the Official Languages Act and Programme): the Francophone Institute for New Information and Training Technologies (INTIF), the Francophone Information Highway Fund (FFI), the Information Highway Access Points for Youth Programme, the Intergovernmental Agency of La Francophonie (AIF) and Franconet Canada. Among other things, the AIF supports the arts, audiovisual and cultural heritage particularly in developing Francophone countries.
Language issues in Canada also relate to Aboriginal languages. In this regard, the Aboriginal Languages Initiative (ALI), created in 1998, provides CAD 5 million annually to support the preservation, revitalisation and promotion of Aboriginal languages in Canada. In 2006-07, the ALI provided funding to 24 Aboriginal organisations, allowing over 200 communities to carry out language projects. Three-quarters of funding is earmarked for First Nations languages, 15% for Inuktitut, and 10% for Michif, the Métis language. Individual organisations assess the conditions of their own languages and develop intervention strategies based on these needs. Funding is also provided annually to the Assembly of First Nations (AFN) in support of the Chiefs Committee on Languages and for its comprehensive approach including research, planning and symposia. The ALI also provides targeted support to 6 Inuit regional organisations focussing on early childhood language acquisition, promotional projects for youth, and the development of new Inuktitut lexicons and directories, and to the work of the National Inuit Language Committee. Five Métis organisations also receive support to the revitalisation of Michif including working groups and workshops for language practitioners and regional organisations, as well as funding for the Métis National Council (MNC) in relation to the work of the national Michif Language Working Group and the annual Michif Conference. In September 2008, the government of Canada announced funding for the Qikiqtani Inuit Association's project, Pigiarvik, designed to preserve, protect and promote the Inuktitut language among the younger generations of Inuit. It has several components including traditional knowledge and its digitisation and the development of Inuktitut magazines for children and youth.
Another area of growing recognition is of other non-official or third or "heritage" languages. The Canadian Multiculturalism Act (1985) states the policy of Canada is to "preserve and enhance the use of languages other than English and French, while strengthening the status of and use of the official languages of Canada" and to "facilitate the acquisition, retention and use of all languages that contribute to the multicultural heritage of Canada." It is revealing that even in the Canadian Multiculturalism Act (1985), languages other than the official languages are cast in terms of promoting official languages objectives.
According to the 2006 Census, Canadians speak some 147 languages, up from 38 in 1971. The mother tongue of 58% (down from 61% in 1991) of Canadians (Anglophones) is English, 22% (down from 25%in 1991) is French (Francophones) and 21% (up from 16% in 1991) have other languages as their mother tongue (Allophones). Outside Quebec, Francophones accounted for 4.3% of the population. In Quebec, Anglophones comprised 8.6% of the province's population in 2006, down from 9.6% in 1991 (a percent decrease but numeric increase). Allophones, largely immigrants, account for slightly more than one-quarter of the population of Ontario and British Columbia and for a majority of the population growth in each these two provinces. The top five non-official languages spoken at home in Canada are Chinese (comprising 8 language categories including Mandarin and Cantonese), Italian, German, Punjabi and Spanish, in that order. After Chinese, languages exhibiting strong growth in recent years in Canada include Urdu, Punjabi, Arabic and Tagalog (Philippines).
One of the most interesting examples of the enhancement of non-official languages in Canada is found in Canada's broadcasting system. A wide range of digital specialty and pay cable services are licensed in Canada including "third language" ethno-cultural stations. According to the CRTC Ethnic Broadcasting Policy (1999), ethnic television and stations are required to devote at least 60 % of their schedules to ethnic programming and at least 50 % of their schedules must consist of their own respective language programming. As of December 2006, the CRTC had approved over 189 Canadian ethnic pay and specialty services. Of these, 26 specialty and four (4) pay services have been launched. The Commission also authorizes non-Canadian third-language programming services that may be distributed by broadcasting distribution undertakings in Canada. As of December 2006, there are 71 third-language programming services authorised for distribution. Moreover, 21 private commercial over-the-air third-language radio stations had been authorised by 2006 to broadcast in Canada, each with certain unique conditions of license that were imposed to ensure diversity of the programming. (CRTC Broadcasting Policy Monitoring Report 2007) In June 2008, the Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages asked the CRTC to report on the accessibility and quality of broadcasting services offered to minority French- and English-language communities. It forms part of the government's new initiative entitled, Roadmap for Canada's Linguistic Duality, 2008-2013 (see above).
In June 2008, the government of Canada announced the development of a new Programme to Support Linguistic Rights. The Programme is intended to promote awareness of linguistic rights through public education, to offer access to mediation and arbitration to settle disputes out of court, and to support litigation that helps to clarify linguistic rights when test cases are involved and mediation efforts have failed and is funded at CAD 1.5 million annually through the Development of Official-Language Communities Programme in the Department of Canadian Heritage. In August 2008, the government of Canada marked the 35th anniversary of the Official Language Monitor Programme funded by the Department of Canadian Heritage and administered by the Council of Ministers of Education, Canada (CMEC) in cooperation with provincial and territorial departments of education (see chapter 5.1).
Another interesting report in the area of language is a CD Howe study entitled, Laggards No More (Vaillancourt et al 2007) which concludes that the socio-economic status of francophones in Quebec has increased steadily since 1960, the beginning of the Quiet Revolution in that province almost fifty years ago. Incomes of bilingual francophones (male and female) in Quebec now surpass those of unilingual and bilingual anglophones and unilingual francophones. It is noteworthy, none the less, that the average male annual income of female bilingual francophones, at CAD 26 644, is much less than that of male bilingual francophones at CAD 38 851. The report also found that Francophones own 67% of the Quebec economy in 2003, up from 47% in 1961.
Last update: November, 2008
Status of Women Canada (SWC) is a federal agency, established thirty years ago, that promotes gender equality in Canada and the full participation of women in the economic, social, cultural and political life of the country. SWC reports to the Minister of State (Status of Women). Its mandate includes a gender-based analysis of legislation, policies and programmes throughout the federal government including the Heritage Portfolio. SWC operates a Policy Research Fund that supports gender-based research and acts as a knowledge broker on gender equality, a centre of expertise and a catalyst for network building. The following priority areas have been identified by SWC for action:
- enhancing women's participation in Canada's cultural development and heritage;
- commemorating women in Canadian history;
- promoting women in heritage programme development;
- fostering women's participation in the arts;
- enhancing women's participation in cultural industries and broadcasting;
- improving the status of women in sport in Canada;
- helping to reduce employment barriers and other obstacles facing first-generation Canadians and members of ethno-cultural and visible minorities, particularly women, within the artistic and performing arts world;
- helping Aboriginal women to maintain their cultural distinctiveness and to address their cultural identity and other issues;
- advancing women's contributions to Canadian identity; and
- taking the needs of women in official-language communities into account in federal legislation, policies and programmes (Plan for Gender Equality, 1995-2000).
The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) developed its first policy on equitable and realistic gender portrayal in on-air programmes and advertising in 1992. While there is substantial industry self-regulation with regards to gender, all private broadcasters in Canada must adhere to the Sex Role Portrayal Code for Television and Radio Programming administered by the Canadian Broadcast Standards Council.
To date, there has been no comprehensive scorecard on the progress of achieving gender equality throughout the entire cultural sector. However, the 2001 Census data indicate that women made up 54% of the 130 695 artists representing nine occupations in Canada. Women were significantly more numerous than men among dancers (85%), artisans and craft persons (62%) and slightly more numerous than men as musicians and singers (56%), writers (54%) and painters, sculptors and other visual artists (54%). Men, on the other hand, were almost twice as numerous as women as conductors, composers and arrangers (68%), producers, directors, choreographers and related occupations (61%) and actors (55%). Men continue to be over-represented in the highest-paying occupations while women continue to be over-represented in the lowest-paying occupations in the cultural sector. (Hill Strategies: A Statistical Profile of Artists in Canada 2004). There has been continued growth in the proportion of employment by women in artistic, literary and recreational occupations in Canada from 50.4% in 1987 to 53.5% in 2002. There is wider awareness of both progress and gaps in the effort to ensure equality of women. For example, in 2005: only one in five Members of Parliament was a woman; the employment income gap between male and female university graduates who work full time has widened; women working full time still earn only 71 cents for every dollar that men make; there are over six times as many female victims of sexual assault as male victims; and women are still more likely than males to live in poverty, especially Aboriginal and female lone parents. The issue of unpaid work at home remains controversial.
Other initiatives of SWC include research on the gender dimensions of Canada's social capital and Canada's key role in the Beijing +10 Platform for Action (1995 and 2005) that represented a critical opportunity for exchange among international representatives on the issue of how to achieve results in gender equality. The terms and conditions of the Women's Programme were renewed for the period September 2006 to September 2011. The objective of the Programme is to achieve the full participation of women in the economic, social and cultural life of Canada through the implementation of strategies to advance gender equality and gender-based-analysis (GBA). Pursuant to an evaluation of the Programme in 2006, a major review of the structure, information system, governance and management effectiveness was conducted in 2007. Recent SWC initiatives include: the Federal / Provincial / Territorial Ministers Responsible for the Status of Women Policy Forum on Aboriginal Women and Violence (March 2006) held in Ottawa to discuss the need to raise awareness, better access to Programme support, and the need to integrate Aboriginal values, traditions and rights in policies, programmes, research and legislation; the government commemoration, on 6 December, of Canada's National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence against Women; government Responses to several Reports of the Standing Committee on the Status of Women in 2005-06 on gender-based analysis, funding, pay equity and parental benefits for self-employed people. In November 2007, the Minister of Canadian Heritage, Status of Women and Official Languages announced a call for proposals for funding affecting Aboriginal women under the Women's Community Fund which also contains initiatives on family violence and women's self-government participation. The Women's Partnership Fund provides support to collaborative projects involving other levels of government and NGOs.
This information will be published as soon as possible.
Last update: November, 2008
Cultural minorities in Canada are diverse in scope and definition. In Canada, the term, "cultural minorities" applies to ethno-cultural, official languages, ethno-racial, religious and demographic populations, including immigrants. "Visible minorities" are yet another definition with populations totalling over 4 million in 2001. One-half of the population in Toronto and Vancouver, Canada's largest and third largest cities, respectively, will soon be comprised of visible minorities according to current and projected immigration trends. Immigrants already constitute 44% of Toronto's population and 38% of Vancouver's population. In 1950, when the landmark Massey-Lévesque Commission linked cultural diversity and Canadian identity, 92% of Canada's population growth was a product of the domestic birth rate. Today, immigration, defined as persons who are, or have been, landed immigrants in Canada, excluding non-permanent residents, has outpaced the natural birth rate in Canada, and accounts for 20% of Canada's population and 53% of the country's overall population growth. The immigrant growth rate from 2001 to 2006 was 14%. Indeed, without continuing high levels of immigration, Canada would be unlikely to produce enough natural growth in the population to expand its population and labour force. While the majority of the Canadian population of more than 33 million is still descended from either Great Britain or France, 47% of Canadians reported multiple origins or at least one origin other than British, French, or Canadian and more than 200 different ethnic origins were reported in the 2006 Census (Statistics Canada 2007).
While Canada does not officially recognise specific ethno-cultural minorities, the 39th Parliament of Canada voted, November 22, 2006 to recognise that the Québecois form a nation within a unified Canada.
Until recently, the Department of Canadian Heritage was responsible for the implementation of the Multiculturalism Programme, based on the Canadian Multiculturalism Act, (1985 and assented to in 1988). It is now part of Citizenship and Immigration Canada. Canada's diversity is a source of enormous benefit to Canada's social, political, economic and cultural development. However, there is growing evidence that while many members of ethno-cultural / racial communities participate fully in all aspects of Canadian life, others encounter barriers, some long term, to their full participation in society. The Multiculturalism Programme fosters awareness among federal institutions of their obligations under the Canadian Multiculturalism Act, and also aims to support the removal of barriers related to race, ethnicity, cultural or religious background that would prevent full participation in Canadian society. The Programme is active in supporting civil society, research and policy development, public education and promotion, and public institutions (including federal institutions). (Annual Report on the Operation of the Canadian Multiculturalism Act, 2006-2007)
Examples of best practices under each of the foregoing activity areas include projects funded by the Programme such as:
- Support to Civil Society: Mosaic antic-racism youth project in the Northwest Territories; a youth leadership for inclusion in Northeastern Ontario; Third International Symposium on Hate in the Internet conducted by the League for Human Rights of B'nai Brith; Baraka 2007 developed by the Black Islanders Cooperative in Charlottetown, PEI during Black History Month in Canada; Black Youth in Action designed to promote black youth community leadership and to counter racism in Halton, Ontario; Condition of the Haitian Community forums in Montreal held by the National Council of Citizens of Haitian Origin; and Responding to the Educational Challenges of Newcomer Students and Families in focus groups led by the Multicultural Women's Organisation of Newfoundland and Labrador;
- Research and Policy Development: Report on Visible Minorities in Urban Cities and the rise of ethno-cultural "ghettoes" in Montreal, Toronto and Vancouver, and the Demographic Imbalance between City and Country;
- Support to Public Institutions: United against Racism - Designing Inclusive Schools Conference in Winnipeg for Aboriginal students; National Transcultural Health Conference organised by the Montreal Children's Hospital; and a Health Guide for New Arrivals and Health care Workers in Moncton, New Brunswick; and 4. Public Education and Promotion: Black History Month each February, annual March 21 Racism, Stop It! National Video Competition, Asian Heritage Month recognised each May; and the 11th annual Mathieu da Costa Challenge involving texts and drawings submitted by youth from 9 to 18 in commemoration of the first recorded black person to set foot in Canada; participation in the Task Force for International Cooperation on Holocaust Education, Remembrance and Research (ITF) in Prague; National Historic Recognition Programme and Community Historical Recognition Programme, apologies for the Chinese Head Tax and for the Komagata Maru incident in which Indo-Canadian migrants were refused disembarkation in Vancouver in 1914.
The Department considers such support as contributing to inter-cultural understanding and the social cohesion of the country and helping to develop collaborative frameworks with other Canadian Heritage programmes and other government departments and agencies to address specific challenges facing ethno-cultural / racial communities in Canada (see chapter 2.5.1 and chapter 2.7). Support is provided by Canadian Heritage and other Portfolio institutions to organisations working with ethno-cultural / racial communities across the country. Since the provisions of the Canadian Multiculturalism Act (1988) apply to all federal institutions, and not just to the programmes administered by the Department of Canadian Heritage, significant levels of federal support and regulations are directed at ensuring that federal government activities are carried on in a manner that is sensitive to the multicultural reality of Canada. For example, the Broadcasting Act (1991) has had a significant impact on Canadian society because it outlines the governance of the CBC, the establishment of the CRTC and the regulation of the broadcasting industry. Another example is the Canada Council for the Arts, which has, since the 1980s, adapted programmes and procedures to ensure proper reflection of Canada's cultural diversity. For example, its Equity Office provides a strategic focus on equality of opportunity for visible minority artists and organisations.
In broad terms, principles of diversity are implemented throughout the federal government, in order to ensure:
- equitable and comprehensive access to culture by all Canadians;
- equitable access to public funding for creators and cultural institutions representing diverse communities;
- growth of a steady stream of Canadian content reflecting the full ethno-cultural diversity of the Canadian people that tells Canadian stories and embodies the voices of Canadian talent and creators in both official languages;
- equitable access to employment in federal cultural institutions; and
- enhanced social cohesion and reduced social exclusion through the simultaneous recognition of differentiated identities and the forging of a new sense of belonging.
The Department of Canadian Heritage also targets youth, an important demographic minority, in its program and policies, in order to increase young Canadians' knowledge and understanding of Canada, its history, people and institutions; and their appreciation for Canada's cultural diversity, linguistic duality and heritage, through reciprocal "home stay" exchanges, thematic forums, learning materials and activities, and employment and internship opportunities. In 2005-2006, over 21 000 youth benefited from departmental programs directed at youth, including Exchanges Canada, Katimavik and Young Canada Works. More still benefited from learning materials and activities funded by the Canadian Studies Program. Participants were able to better understand both the diversity and the shared aspects of the Canadian experience, and connect with one another and their communities.
Provisions for Aboriginal People
Aboriginal societies have a unique place in Canadian society that is recognised in the Constitution, celebrations, arts, heritage and cultural activities, the government's policy agenda and by Canadians in general. In order to move beyond the stage of "recognition" to a more dynamic inclusion, participation and contribution of Aboriginal societies to Canada's civic life, an informed partnership with Aboriginal societies is necessary - a partnership founded on the collective goal of preserving and strengthening Aboriginal cultures as a key to the vitality, well-being and development of Aboriginal communities, the enhancement of understanding across diverse communities and the overall enrichment of Canadian life.
According to the 2006 Census, 1.173 million persons reported having Aboriginal ancestry / origin and, of those, 75% reported identifying with at least one Aboriginal group. A majority of the Aboriginal identity population resides in urban areas (494 095), 20% in rural areas (196 135) and 29% on reserves (286 080). Urban areas accounted for a large portion of the increase (56%) in the Aboriginal identity population between 1996 and 2001.
- In 2006, the large majority of the Aboriginal identity population was First Nations (almost 60%) and the remainder was Métis (almost 29%) and Inuit (4.3%). In a medium-growth scenario, the Aboriginal share of the total Canadian population is expected to increase to 4.1% by 2017, up from 3.4% in 2001. Growth in Aboriginal populations in Canada from 1996 to 2006 was 45% compared to just 8% for non-Aboriginals. The Aboriginal median age is projected to increase from 24.7 to 27.8 years while that of the total Canadian population is expected to increase from 37.1 years to 41.3 years. (Statistics Canada, Projections of the Aboriginal Populations, Canada, Province and Territories, 2001-2017).
- The Aboriginal population is also very young. According to the 2001 Census of Population children under 15 years of age represented 37% of the total Aboriginal identity population. Moreover, the Aboriginal identity population will continue to be much younger than the total Canadian population. However, only 21% of the Aboriginal identity population reported having an Aboriginal mother tongue (i.e. the first language learned and still understood) and only 4% of urban Aboriginal identity youth (15 to 24 years old) reported an Aboriginal mother tongue. It should be noted that some of the Aboriginal data contained in the Statistics Canada projections 2001-2017 are controversial because they did not take into account "ethnic mobility" in terms of self-identification or -attribution, therefore affecting the population numbers, especially those of the Métis.
Although the Department of Indian Affairs and Northern Development administers the bulk of federal legislation and programmes pertaining to Aboriginal peoples in Canada, the Department of Canadian Heritage provides programmes to support an Aboriginal infrastructure at the national, regional and community levels for Inuit, Métis, Non-Status Indians and First Nations living primarily in urban and rural off-reserve communities. These programmes enable Aboriginal people to address social, cultural and economic issues affecting their lives in Canadian society. In broadcasting, one of the most powerful instruments addressing Aboriginal culture is the Aboriginal People's Television Network (APTN) while the Canadian Television Fund, another of Canada's major cultural instruments, maintains a special envelope that funds Aboriginal-language productions. A National Gathering on Aboriginal Artistic Expression was held in 2002 and National Gatherings on Aboriginal Culture and Tourism were held in 2003 and 2005.
The Urban Multipurpose Aboriginal Youth Centres Programme (UMAYC) is administered by the Department of Canadian Heritage to develop a network of urban, multipurpose, Aboriginal youth programming in Canada. Programming provides accessible, Aboriginal community-based, culturally relevant and supportive projects, programmes, services and counselling to urban Aboriginal youth and facilitates their participation in existing programmes in order to improve their economic, social and personal prospects.
The Canada Council for the Arts also supports cultural diversity through its engagement with Aboriginal artists. The Aboriginal Arts Secretariat develops policies, programmes, strategic initiatives and budgets to support Aboriginal artistic practices in all arts disciplines. The Aboriginal Peoples Collaborative Exchange Programme offers funding to Aboriginal groups and individuals for projects that involve the sharing, appreciation, understanding or awareness of traditional and / or contemporary knowledge and practice. Other examples of greater culturally diverse and Aboriginal inclusion include:
- a new definition of "professional artist" inclusive of a range of cultural practices and traditions;
- an increased representation of culturally diverse and Aboriginal artists at about 20% of the total number of peer assessors;
- new programmes in Aboriginal music, dance, visual and media arts added to existing programmes in theatre and writing;
- the number of culturally diverse and Aboriginal employees exceeding demographic representation in the population; and
- increased outreach to diverse communities in addition to translation of programme information into several languages.
According to the Report on Plans and Priorities (2006-2007), the Department of Canadian Heritage plans to respond, pursuant to consultations with its partners in the Canadian Aboriginal language community, to the Report of the Task Force on Aboriginal Languages and Cultures (2005) in regard to the establishment of a policy on Aboriginal language preservation, revitalisation and promotion and the development of tools that enable Aboriginal languages to be heard, read and recognised in public places and to make the languages accessible to all speakers, on and off reserve, in those places where the languages are used (see chapter 2.5.4).
Last update: November, 2008
Social cohesion is defined by the Council of Europe as "the capacity of a society to ensure the welfare of all its members, minimising disparities and avoiding polarisation." A cohesive society is "a mutually supportive community of free individuals pursuing these common goals by democratic means" (European Committee for Social Cohesion 2004). In Canada, considerable work has been undertaken by government departments, agencies and research institutes such as the Policy Research Initiative (PRI) in respect to social cohesion and its infrastructure of social capital especially networking (Policy Research Initiative 2005). Culture is recognised as a core component of social cohesion along with economic viability (including equitable income distribution, absence of income polarisation along gender, ethnic, regional and class lines, depth and duration of poverty and unemployment), norms and values in regard to dignity and respect, tolerance and reciprocity, personal development and autonomy, civic participation, and quality of life. In respect to culture and social cohesion, the issue is whether cultural participation enhances social cohesion. In order to understand how cultural capital may become or otherwise lead to social capital, essential to the development of social cohesion, research into the social, economic and political benefits of culture to good citizenship is required. The 2006-07 Departmental Performance Report concludes, "The Department's mission and strategic outcomes are aimed at cultural and social phenomena that are difficult to quantify or to attribute to any given intervention. These include creativity, social cohesion, confidence, pride, and a feeling of belonging and attachment to Canada. Continuous effort and research are needed to refine indicators and frameworks for programme evaluation and policy review."
Volunteering and donating are often used as indicators of social cohesion. The 2004 Canada Survey of Giving, Volunteering and Participating (2006), estimated 11.8 million volunteers in Canada out of a total population of 31 million, or approximately one in three. The Survey provides a snapshot of the state of voluntary and civic action in Canada. Conducted every three years, the Survey is the result of a partnership of federal government departments, including Statistics Canada, the Department of Canadian Heritage, Human Resources and Social Development Canada, the Public Health Agency of Canada, and Health Canada, and voluntary sector organisations, including Imagine Canada and Volunteers Canada. The Survey asks Canadians a series of questions about how they give money and other resources to individuals and to charitable and non-profit organisations, how they volunteer time to charitable and voluntary organisations and directly to individuals, and how they participate in organisations by becoming members (see chapter 6.1). The key findings of the Survey, according to custom tabulations for Hill Strategies Research (2007), 729 000 Canadians aged 15 and over, or 2.8% of the population in that age range, contributed 88 million hours of volunteer labour service in 2004, worth about CAD 1.1 billion, to arts and cultural organisations. Owing to changes in Statistics Canada survey content and methodology, precise comparisons with previous data cannot be made. However, volunteerism in Canada's arts and culture organisations increased between 2000 and 2004. Highly educated and single Canadians are more likely to volunteer.
Not surprisingly, the total number of approximately 732 000 donors (aged 15 and over) to these organisations is very close to the number of volunteers. These donors made financial donations worth CAD188 million to arts and culture organisations in 2004 which represents a record level of donations by individuals to arts and culture organisations - much higher than amounts captured in surveys conducted in 2000 and 1997.
Other examples of federal initiatives that support social cohesion and the building of an inclusive and participatory society are: A Canada for All: the Action Plan Against Racism (CAPAR, 2006-2007), including the Inclusive Institutions Initiative, and the historical recognition initiative (see chapter 2.1). In regard to the CAPAR, building partnerships between governments and civil society, including ethno-cultural / racial and Aboriginal communities, play a key role in its implementation. The Multiculturalism Programme in partnership with the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) continues to work towards the identification of indicators for measuring racism. To measure the impact of CAPAR, the Department is developing indicators and consulting Canadians to solicit their feedback. Progress will be reported in the Annual Report on the Operation of the Canadian Multiculturalism Act. The Inclusive Institutions Initiative was created in 2005 as part of the CAPAR and works to help more than 20 federal institutions identify gaps or barriers that may limit access to federal programmes and services by ethnic communities, to strengthen relationships between federal institutions and ethnic communities, and to encourage federal institutions to extend the reach of their programmes, policies and services to ethnic communities.
This information will be published as soon as possible.
Last update: November, 2008
Trade in culture: consists of imports and exports of goods and services involving Canada's cultural industries as well as the arts and heritage and is manifested, inter alia, in touring and international exhibitions. Exports of Canadian cultural goods in 2006 totalled CAD 2.1 billion, down 12.7% from 2005. Although the Statistics Canada data collected on cultural services is roughly two years behind those pertaining to cultural goods, cultural service exports totalled CAD 3.049 billion in 2004, an increase of 40.8 % from 2003. Film and television production and distribution services (including revived foreign location shooting in Canada of feature films and TV series and copyright royalties received by Canadian exporters) represented Canada's largest cultural service export and was valued at more than CAD 1.6 billion in 2005-06. The film and video sector exported cultural goods valued at CAD 555 million in 2006, making it the second largest cultural goods exporter after the print media with CAD 787 million (see Table 3 below).
Table 3: Cultural Exports by Sector, 2004 and 2006
Taking cultural goods and services together for the latest common year of data (2004), Canada's cultural services trade deficit reached CAD 1,969 billion. There are a number of issues facing the country's trade in culture including: data collection gaps such as the non-inclusion of crafts and interactive digital media (or new media) in Statistics Canada's cultural statistical framework; the lack of integrated measurement of downloaded cultural content (e.g. television programming, video on demand, music, books) the absence of data on some royalties and rights such as copyright collection societies; and the level of reliance of Canada's cultural exporters on the United States market (89.9% of Canadian cultural goods exports in 2006 and 78% of Canada's cultural service exports in 2004).
Trade Routes is a programme that carries out the Department of Canadian Heritage's strategy to expand international markets for Canada's cultural sector. It supports the government's trade agenda to enhance prosperity and job growth in the knowledge-based sectors of the new economy. Through Trade Routes, the Department of Canadian Heritage ensures that Canada's arts and cultural entrepreneurs and organisations have access to Trade Team Canada - Cultural Goods and Services: a network of government trade programmes and services. The Trade Routes Contribution Programme helps cultural organisations succeed internationally through export preparedness and international market development. The Trade Routes Programme was renewed for a five-year period to 2010. Trade Routes Advisers are currently stationed in Canadian Missions abroad in Paris, London, New York, Los Angeles and Shanghai, as well as international trade regional offices across Canada. In August 2008, the Department of Canadian Heritage announced it will no longer provide financing to Trade Routes. The funding will stop at the end of the department's fiscal year, on 31 March 2009. In a release posted on Canadian Heritage's website, the government of Canada said it is "committed to a more disciplined approach to managing spending in order to deliver programs that are efficient and effective and that meet the priorities of Canada."
Cultural Tourism: The Department of Canadian Heritage participates in tourism promotion with federal partners such as the Canadian Tourism Commission and Industry Canada and with the provincial governments through the Federal / Provincial and Territorial Committee on Culture and Heritage. The aims of this involvement are to promote the appeal of cultural attractions such as Aboriginal tourism, language learning tourism, and inter-regional tourism within Canada especially in light of the earlier downturn in international tourism, post 9/11 (see chapter 1.3.3).
Tourism in Canada is a CAD 62.7 billion industry. According to the Tourism Industry Association of Canada, more than 200 000 small and medium-sized businesses make up the industry and employed 625 800 Canadians directly in 2005 and one million indirectly, or about four per cent of Canada's workforce. According to Industry Canada, tourism is Canada's largest provider of new jobs. Aboriginal tourism (all tourism businesses owned or operated by First Nations, Métis, and Inuit) generated CAD 4.9 billion and employed about 13 000 people full time in 2001. Canada's cultural attractions also show Canada to the world and promote understanding of Canadian people, heritage, and nature. Canada ranks among the world's top 12 destinations according to the UN World Tourism Organisation. More than 36 million travellers entered Canada in 2005 and many Canadians travel within the country. The Canadian Tourism Commission raises awareness of Canada as a four-season tourism destination. This Crown Corporation also monitors tourism trends and challenges.
Foreign Investment: Authority for the review and approval of foreign ownership and investment in the cultural industries under the Investment Canada Act (1985) was transferred from the Minister of Industry to the Minister of Canadian Heritage in 1999. The Cultural Sector Investment Review directorate is part of the Department's Cultural Affairs Sector. The Investment Canada Act (1985) applies through the application of Investment Canada Regulations to non-Canadians who invest in businesses engaged in the publication, distribution or sale of books, magazines, periodicals, newspapers or music in print or machine readable form (excluding printing and typesetting), the production, distribution, sale or exhibition of film or video products, the production, distribution, sale or exhibition of audio or video music recordings and the publication , distribution or sale of music in print or machine readable form. Investments involving the acquisition of control of Canadian cultural businesses or the establishment of new cultural businesses are subject to approval by the Minister of Canadian Heritage. Investments are assessed for net benefit to Canada, based on the factors set forth in Section 20 of the Investment Canada Act (1985), which include compatibility with Canada's cultural policies. As Applications for Review and Notifications are approved, they are published on a monthly basis. They contain only the information that may be disclosed under the Act (1985). The Act also provides remedies for non-compliance.