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On April 30, Ontario Liberal Party Leader Steven Del Duca sent the following letter to Premier Doug Ford:
Dear Premier Ford,
Ontario’s media has been vital to combating COVID-19. You yourself have lauded the efforts of journalists to inform the public about our public health crisis.
However, media in Ontario have not been spared from cutbacks. Advertising revenue is down, and many small and independent publications are in danger.
Already we’ve seen the Canadian Jewish News close its doors citing COVID-19 as a factor. And many other publications including multicultural media are having a very difficult time right now.
These small and independent media outlets are not eligible for existing government programs due to the size of their payrolls – we must make sure they receive assistance.
Today, I am calling for an Ontario Independent Journalism Fund to aid these small publications and help them bridge to better times.
Multicultural news outlets are important institutions that inform Ontarians of every background on current events.
I would also urge your government to advertise in these important publications to broaden the reach of Ontario’s message.
These are important recommendations to protect Ontario’s small and independent media. Let’s make sure when we are on the other side of the COVID-19 crisis we have not lost important local institutions.
Steven Del Duca
Ontario Liberal Party