OTTAWA (PGN) >> CanWest MediaWorks will be in breach of its broadcast licenses when it centralizes operations, the country’s largest media union claims.
The Communications, Energy and Paperworks Union of Canada (CEP) filed an official complaint today with the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC).
"We are calling on the CRTC to expedite a public inquiry into CanWest's plans to centralize its broadcasting operations,” says CEP vice-president Peter Murdoch, in a release.
The company is planning to centralize operations at the new CanWest News Service office in the nation’s capital. As many as 200 employees in the broadcast division have already received layoff notices and insiders claim layoffs in the publishing division are imminent.
"These cutbacks by CanWest at its newspapers and broadcasting stations are the result of high levels of media ownership concentration promoted by the CRTC, actions which federal inquiries and parliamentary committees have been warning about for decades,” says Murdoch.
The CEP adds that CanWest is reducing its newsroom workforce at the same time it is partnering with U.S. company Goldman Sachs to purchases the assets of Alliance Atlantis.
"The CRTC needs to tell CanWest clearly and directly that it can't buy a new property by ignoring the commitments it has made to Canadians and the CRTC in the past about its existing licences,” says Murdoch.