Justin Trudeau, Arts Funding
Justin Trudeau, Arts Funding

Stéphane Dion Sings the Liberal Arts Songbook

The member of Parliament for Saint-Laurent – Cartierville, and Liberal Critic for Canadian Heritage, writing in Huff Post Politics on Saturday...

Canada must be "a 'Nation in arts', a leader in the field." Those are the words of the Governor General's Performing Arts Awards Foundation. The Liberals, under Justin Trudeau's leadership, are determined to make this happen, determined to make Canada, more than ever, a place where cultural expression is created and enjoyed whatever its roots, foreign or domestic.

After all, that's what Canadians want: today more than ever, we love the arts for the joy they bring us, and for being a true and lively reflection of our diversity and identity. Arts and culture are also a powerful economic lever, a source of inspiration that makes our whole nation more creative and innovative, a generator of jobs for the middle class and those who aspire to join it. And to promote Canada abroad, what excellent ambassadors our artists and creators are!

However, our cultural policies need to be adapted to the challenges of the day — especially the digital revolution. In Canada, arts and culture are at a crossroads. They can either move forward or backward, depending on the choices we make. For them to move forward, it will be more than ever necessary for the federal government to play a leading role.

Yet the Conservative government's neglect of our national cultural institutions has reached such proportions that it threatens their very survival: funding cuts to the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, National Film Board and Telefilm Canada; a stagnant budget at the Canada Council for the Arts; erosion of Crown Corporation autonomy; lack of investment in cultural infrastructure; halted cultural diplomacy ... these harmful actions have severely damaged all of our cultural communities. The Liberal Party will cancel those unfortunate Conservative decisions and give our country a new cultural impetus.

We will not abandon our national public broadcaster. And we will do more than just reverse the Conservative 115 million-dollar cuts...

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