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Canadian Federation of Library Associations / Fédération canadienne des associations de bibliothèques

Canadian Federation of Library Associations Update (October 2019)

November 24, 2019

Katherine McColgan, Executive Director of the Canadian Federation of Library Associations (CFLA), has provided an overview of activities since June 2019.


Meetings with Members of Parliament and Government Officials

On September 9, 2019, K. McColgan, S. Haigh, and N. Marrelli met with government officials from Canadian Heritage and Industry to discuss the Crown Copyright portfolio. Work is underway from all parties to gather more information related to the possible removal of Crown Copyright. A follow up meeting is being scheduled for December.

Other Advocacy Developments

As an Observer to the WIPO-SCCR, CFLA-FCAB signed on to two letters at this session’s conference; “NGO letter to WIPO negotiators, regarding proposal to sidetrack WIPO work on copyright limitations and exceptions” and SCCR Secretariat bias in the conduct of the regional seminars and the international conference.

Our Elections Platforms Campaign was announced on September 30, 2019 and we provided tools for our members and our members’ members to support discussions with candidates and government officials regarding, infrastructure funding, copyright, accessibility, and Indigenous languages. We are now working to prepare congratulatory letters to elected officials that will be made available for use through the website.


CFLA-FCAB released a letter on October 23, 2019 in support of Toronto Public Library’s rental of meeting space to a controversial third-party individual, Meghan Murphy. While the letter spoke to existing public statements from CFLA-FCAB, the letter also noted the current state of discourse on this matter, indicating that our goal for the 2020 National Forum is to offer the opportunity for the library community to come together for a much needed, open discussion on this topic.

On October 11, 2019, CFLA-FCAB in partnership with CALL-ACBD held a webinar “Being an Intervener in a Court Case”. The recording of the webinar and the PowerPoint presentation can be found on the CFLA-FCAB website.

October 7, 2019 – CFLA-FCAB issued a press release celebrating Canadian Library Month

September 19 & 20, 2019, K. McColgan attended the International G7 Summit on Science, Trust and Democracy in the Digital Age. Planned by the Royal Society of Canada (RSC), in partnership with the University of Ottawa and the Embassy of France in Canada, this event featured scholars who examined the current state and possible future of challenges and opportunities on societal trust in science, and democratic institutions and practices in the Digital Age.

Committee Updates

All committees have now prepared their work plans in support of our Strategic Directions.

The Copyright Committee has been working on statements and briefing notes on the Marrakesh Treaty guide for Canada and Controlled Digital Lending. The Canadian Heritage report Shifting Paradigms; and the report from the INDU Committee on the Copyright Act Review have been heavily consulted and the committee is preparing responses to those reports. CFLA-FCAB in partnership with a number of organizations, submitted a letter to government on the removal of Crown Copyright.

The Canadian Association of Research Libraries (CARL), Canadian Council of Archives (CCA), and CFLA-FCAB are partnering in a working group that is addressing Crown Copyright. We met with ISED and PCH in September and have scheduled a follow up meeting in December.

The Cataloguing and Metadata Standards Committee released a statement entitled “A plain-language description of BIBFRAME and its potential impact on Canadian libraries”. In the coming days, a sample of Canadian libraries will be receiving an invitation to participate in a survey developed by the Canadian BIBFRAME Readiness Task Force to assess current understanding and readiness for the probable transition from encoding bibliographic data in MARC to BIBFRAME.

The Indigenous Matters Committee continues to update the UNESCO International Year of Indigenous Languages website, and has developed a guide for this process. The classifications and subject matter headings work is focused in two main areas; the classification systems and the terminology. The committee is exploring transforming the ontology document from a spreadsheet to an interactive database and work is being undertaken on data definitions and identifying and describing Indigenous communities in Canada.

Administration & Outreach

CFLA-FCAB has been collaborating with IFLA on research they have been doing relating to broadband strategies, digital infrastructure and literacy, telecoms policies, etc. We are exploring the possibility of partnering on a national assessment of what Canada has been doing in this area.

October 23 – 25, 2019, K. McColgan attended the CSAE 2019 Conference held in Vancouver. Although the conference was not a library-sector conference, she participated on a panel with two other association executives discussing sustainable development goals and what CFLA-FCAB is doing to create recognition of the work that libraries do in support of these goals.

October 16 – 18, 2019, K. McColgan attended the CRKN Access to Knowledge Conference 2019 in Ottawa. The conference held several panels discussing various topics such s licensing, digital heritage, open access, and the decolonization of metadata to name a few.

K. McColgan attended the IFLA annual conference held in Athens, Greece in August 2019. This was the first time attending the conference and provided an opportunity to co-host the Canadian Caucus with L. Villalongo (Executive Director of FMD) where attendees heard updates from each organization, shared with the group information on presentations that Canadians were involved in. K. McColgan also presented on panel with 6 other representatives from countries around to the world discussing the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals and what CFLA-FCAB and Canada is doing in support of the SDGs. The conference paper can be found on the IFLA website.

A-R. Stefanko participated in the ALA Annual Conference in Washington, D.C., in June 2019. It was an opportunity to meet with J. Khan, Trade Policy Officer, Embassy of Canada to the United States, meet with ALA staff to discuss Canadian representation on the Committee on Accreditation, attend sessions and discussions on the current e-
books issue and topics on EDI (equity, diversity, and inclusion), meet with numerous Exhibitors, as well as meet with the leadership of successful American organizations such as ULC.

Upcoming Events

We look forward to seeing you at the 4th Annual AGM during the OLA Superconference, January 29, 2020.

Also, please Save the Date! CFLA-FCAB’s 2nd National Forum to be held in Winnipeg, Manitoba on April 8, 2020. The event will be held in conjunction with the Manitoba Libraries Conference April 6-7 at the Delta, Winnipeg. Planning is well underway and on behalf of both the Manitoba Library Association and CFLA-FCAB we look forward to welcoming you to Winnipeg next Spring. 2020 marks Manitoba’s 150th. May 12, 2020 will mark 150 years since the Manitoba Act received royal assent, paving the way for Manitoba to become Canada’s fifth province.

The logo for the event will be released soon! The conference theme Where the Rivers Meet pays tribute to the Forks – a historic site, meeting place and green space in downtown Winnipeg located at the confluence of the Red River and the Assiniboine River. For at least 6000 years, the Forks has been the meeting place for early Indigenous peoples, and since colonization has also been a meeting place for European fur traders, Métis buffalo hunters, Scottish settlers, railway pioneers and tens of thousands of immigrants. CFLA-FCAB will host a Welcoming Reception on the evening of Tuesday, April 7 at the Canadian Museum for Human Rights located at the Forks. The full day National Forum will take place on Wednesday, April 8 at the Delta Winnipeg.

Respectfully submitted,
Katherine McColgan, October 31, 2019

Save the Date! Manitoba Libraries Conference (April 6-7, 2020) | CFLA National Forum (April 8, 2020) in Winnipeg

(Via Canadian Federation of Library Associations)

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