ACTRA heads to the Hill


Canadian artist union ACTRA headed to Ottawa this week, celebrating Canadian talent and lobbying the federal government for greater industry support.

The goal of the two-day trip, according to the organization, was three-fold: requesting the government “nurture” Canadian cultural sector jobs by supporting the creation of Canadian content; continued funding of bodies such as Telefilm, the CMF, the CBC and NFB; and signing and ratifying the Beijing Treaty, a 2012 treaty the regulates copyright for performance and performers’ rights.

The union was also there in support of an event celebrating the career of actor Gordon Pinsent.

“We’re here to let MPs know Canadian culture contributes to both our economy and to our national identity,” said Pinsent. “This is about who we are as Canadians, from coast to coast. Our stories matter. They define us.”

Among those supporting ACTRA’s lobbying efforts were actors Katie Boland, Jesse Camacho, and Peter Keleghan.

Of the trip, ACTRA president Ferne Downey said the union gained greater exposure for its members, and their work.

“We were pleased to be able to introduce so many of the ‘next generation’ of Canadian stars to The Hill. They represent the future of film and TV and brought with us a strong message that we must see more Canada on all our screens, big, small and mobile.”

Photo: Demetrius Joyette, Clara Pasieka, Katie Boland, Munro Chambers and Jesse Camacho (courtesy of ACTRA)