Library and GLAM Sector Submissions to 2021 Pre-Budget Consultations
January 4, 2021
In December 2020, the the House of Commons Standing Committee on Finance resumed its Pre-Budget Consultations in Advance of the 2021 Federal Budget.
Prior to the proroguing of Parliament in August, the Canadian Association of Research Libraries (CARL) and the Canadian Urban Libraries Council (CULC)—the national voices for Canada’s research libraries and major public library systems—had published their recommendations for consideration in the next federal budget.
In November, the Standing Committee published the briefs submitted by other associations and organizations representing Canada’s GLAM (galleries, libraries, archives, and museums) sector.
Canadian Association of Research Libraries (CARL)
That the Government recognize there is a gap in available high-speed internet in urban settings and expand funding opportunities to include urban areas, in addition to rural and remote.
That the Government increase support to small enterprise and last-mile ISPs to increase market competition and to maintain the capacity for ongoing service and delivery.
That the Government introduce a program similar to the Connecting Families Program to provide affordable high-speed internet and equipment for eligible lowincome post-secondary students.
That the Government review the minimum upload and download standards established by the CRTC to ensure that Canadians remain competitive with average global internet speeds.
(Full submission from the Canadian Association of Research Libraries)
Canadian Federation of Library Associations
- CFLA-FCAB recommends that the government invest $100 million over the next four years to help support affordable digital infrastructure in libraries. As community hubs, libraries are regularly used to access internet and online services. Following the COVID-19 crisis, ensuring remote learning and/or working spaces are available is crucial to meeting this demand while respecting physical distancing measures.
- CFLA-FCAB recommends that the government commit to $200 million over the next four years to help implement efficient and cost-effective green infrastructure in vital community hubs from coast to coast to coast. Investment in a targeted library upgrade investment fund supports the circular economy and Canada’s Federal Sustainable Development Strategy’s.
- CFLA-FCAB recommends that the government invest $30 milllion in the fair and equitable access to online materials so that Canadians can continue following public health and safety measures following the COVID-19 pandemic.
(Full submission from the Canadian Federation of Library Associations)
Canadian Museums Association (CMA)
The Canadian Museums Association recommends that the 2021 Federal Budget extends and increases emergency support to museums.
The Canadian Museums Association recommends that through the 2021 Federal Budget, the government continues to prioritize an investment of resources toward the review of the national museum policy; and
The Canadian Museums Association recommends that the 2021 Federal Budget increases funding to Canada’s museums to at least $60 million annually.
(Full submission from the Canadian Museums Association)
Canadian Urban Libraries Council (CULC)
The Government of Canada ensures access to e-content for Canada’s public libraries from multinational publishers.
That the Government of Canada consider longer term funding arrangements to ensure municipalities can continue to provide essential services, including those offered by public libraries, while municipal revenues continue to be impacted by the pandemic.
That the Government of Canada maintain its commitment to increase broadband access across Canada and seek exemptions for public libraries from broadband providers to ensure digital access to public library services is available for all Canadians.
That the Government of Canada consider funding the critical role libraries play in supporting vulnerable populations across Canada.
That the Government of Canada ensure adequate funding is provided on an urgent basis to CELA to ensure accessible reading material can be provided to vulnerable populations.
That the Government of Canada provide immediate support to Canadian publishers and booksellers so that they can continue to publish, promote and sell Canadian content in the Canadian market.
(Full submission from the Canadian Urban Libraries Council)
Centre for Equitable Library Access (CELA)
That the government provide funding in the amount of $3 million in Budget 2021 for the production of accessible format materials to be distributed through public libraries by the Centre for Equitable Library Access (CELA).
That the government commit to multi-year funding of a minimum $4,000,000 annually to NNELS (National Network for Equitable Library Service) and CELA (Centre for Equitable Library Access) on a permanent and sustained basis to support accessible reading for people in Canada with print disabilities through public libraries in Canada.
That the government provide funding on an urgent basis to CELA in Budget 2020 to ensure accessible reading material can be provided to vulnerable populations.
(Full submission from the Centre for Equitable Library Access)
National Network for Equitable Library Service (NNELS)
That the government renew funding for fiscal year 2021-22 in the amount of $1,000,000 to NNELS (National Network for Equitable Library Service) to continue to support accessible reading for people in Canada with print disabilities delivered through the Canadian public library network.
That the government commit to multi-year funding of a minimum of $4,000,000 annually to NNELS (National Network for Equitable Library Service) and CELA (Centre for Equitable Library Access) on a permanent and sustained basis to support accessible reading for people in Canada with print disabilities delivered through the Canadian public library network.
That the government provide funding on an urgent basis to NNELS in Budget 2020 to ensure accessible reading services can be provided to vulnerable populations.
That the government recognize that the work of NNELS is integral to providing accessible reading services to people with print disabilities in Canada, especially during COVID-19, where people with disabilities are disproportionately affected economically, socially and culturally.
(Full submission from the National Network for Equitable Library Service)
Ontario Museum Association
The Ontario Museum Association recommends that the 2021 Federal Budget extends and increases emergency support to museums;
That through the 2021 Federal Budget, the government continues to prioritize an investment of resources toward the review of the national museum policy;
That the 2021 Federal Budget increases funding to Canada’s museums to at least $60 million annually;
That the government fund initiatives for digital transformation in museums; and
That the government expand the Endowment Incentives and Limited Support components of the Canada Cultural Investment Fund to include heritage organizations including museums.
(Full submission from the Ontario Museum Association)
In addition to briefs from the GLAM sector, a number of other organizations submitted briefs with recommendations of interest to the library and information community, including on the topics of book selling, broadband, copyright, digital infrastructure, literacy, online learning, and publishing.
Association of Canadian Publishers
The Association of Canadian Publishers (ACP) represents 115 book publishers, located in all ten provinces and Nunavut.
- Increase Canadian publishers’ competitiveness in a post-COVID-19 economy by immediately increasing the permanent annual budget of the Canada Book Fund, as recommended unanimously by the Standing Committee on Finance in 2016, from $38.4M to $58.4M.
- Implement market-based solutions that encourage fair remuneration of rightsholders for use of copyright protected work through reform of the Copyright Act.
- Stimulate local economies by introducing measures that encourage the purchase and reading of Canadian books.
(Full submission from the Association of Canadian Publishers)
Canadian Private Copying Collective
The Canadian Private Copying Collective (CPCC) is an umbrella organization whose member collectives represent recording artists, composers, songwriters, music publishers and labels.
That the government amend the Copyright Act to make the private copying regime technologically neutral; the focus of these amendments would be to allow the regime to apply to both audio recording media and devices.
(Full submission from the Canadian Private Copying Collective)
The Dollywood Foundation of Canada
Support early literacy initiatives
- The government, with leadership from Employment and Social Development Canada, Canada Child Benefit/Family Benefit and/or Early Learning-Child Care Provincial agreement, support early literacy initiatives. We recommend government support and funding for non-profit organizations that provide evidence-based, effective early literacy programming and resources that fill the widening gap created by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Improve school readiness and literacy outcomes with book ownership in the early years
- Book ownership is directly linked to early childhood literacy development and school readiness. Presently 25% of Canadian households do not own a single book. We propose the government support and fund book ownership for infants and preschool-age children to help offset the long-term consequences caused by decreased access to early childhood educational support.
Prioritize children’s social-emotional development, mental health and resilience through the COVID-19 pandemic, and beyond
- Decades of research have established a link between a child’s exposure to trauma and its effect on their neurological and behavioural development. Children under five are living through the coronavirus crisis during a critical time in their development. The long-term impact will be felt for some time and it is disproportionately affecting those who are already vulnerable, especially our youngest children. Support for our most vulnerable and youngest children needs to be prioritized during the crisis response and to be delivered using an approach that can provide continuity as we move on to the recovery phase.
(Full submission from the The Dollywood Foundation of Canada)
Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences
Invest in fundamental research and improve the balance of funding across disciplines
- Recently the Government of Canada has taken steps to improve our country’s long-term competitiveness by reinvesting in our research system, including the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council. Budget 2021 must continue in this direction.
Protect institutions as they adapt to the ongoing challenges of COVID-19
- The federal government must work with post-secondary leaders to stabilize and sustain these essential institutions so they can continue their work on behalf of Canadians. In the wake of COVID-19, this should include a federal back-stop to offset revenue losses caused by a decline in international student enrollments.
Invest in digital infrastructure, online learning, and open science
- In addition to investing in digital infrastructure, the federal government should fund research and capacity building in education technology and online learning. It should also support and fund an open science strategy for federally funded research, as recommended by the Chief Science Officer and the February 2020 Roadmap for Open Science.
Support reconciliation and equity, diversity, and inclusion
- The federal government should increase investments in Indigenous education and support equity, diversity and inclusion in all aspects of Budget 2021. It should also fund new scholarships, bursaries, and research grants, and use these to create more opportunities for members of under-represented groups, including Black and Indigenous scholars and graduate students.
(Full submission from the Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences)
Federation of Canadian Municipalities
The Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM) unites and convenes 2,000 municipalities across Canada, representing more than 90 percent of Canadians.
That the government build a more prosperous Canada by strengthening core infrastructure, housing and transit to create more livable, inclusive and sustainable cities and communities.
That the government build a more resilient Canada by scaling up proven federal programs that support municipal leadership on GHG reduction and climate adaptation.
That the government build a more connected Canada by moving faster to bring reliable Internet to all Canadians and by supporting communities facing economic uncertainty.
(Full submission from the Federation of Canadian Municipalities)
Magazines Canada is the national association representing Canadian-owned, Canadian-content consumer, cultural, specialty, professional and business magazines.
That the Government of Canada provides additional funding in the amount of $45 million per year to the Canada Periodical Fund in order to ensure it effectively supports Canadian magazine publishers as they recover from steep revenue losses during the pandemic.
That the Government of Canada, recognizing the unique value of magazines as a trusted source of information, shared identity and community-building across the country, ensures that federal government departments support these publications by prioritizing Canadian media outlets in their advertising spending.
That the Government of Canada supports hard-hit magazine publishers in the difficult post-COVID-19 recovery stage by reducing one of these small businesses’ most arduous financial hindrances—the very high fees paid to Canada Post to distribute magazine subscriptions.
Establish an Economic Strategy Table on Creative Industries to expand and strengthen sector growth and accelerate global competitiveness.
(Full submission from the Magazines Canada)
Writers’ Union of Canada
The Writers’ Union of Canada (TWUC) is the national organization of professionally published writers.
That the government immediately amend the Copyright Act in order to repair the damage to the cultural economy from unregulated educational copying of published works.
That the government provide additional annual funding in the amount of $15 million for the Public Lending Right program, bringing the program’s budget to $30 million annually.
That the government implement a permanent Basic Income Guarantee program along the lines of the CERB and its subsequent EI integration.
(Full submission from the Writers’ Union of Canada)