Thomas S. Saras
Traveen S. Singh
Leila Monteiro Lins
Sandie De Freitas
Kathy L. L. Li
Arleta A. Sieradzka
- Welcome Remarks by the chair.
- Minutes of the previous meeting
- Report of the President/Discussions
- Presentation By Micheal Coteau MPP Don Valley East
- New Members/New Business
Welcome Remarks by the Chair:
President Dr. Tajdolati chaired the meeting and declared the meeting open. Ranjit Wicks moved a motion to approve the agenda. Leila Monteiro seconded it. The motion was carried.
Minutes of the previous meeting:
Ranjit Wicks moved a motion to approve the minutes of the previous monthly meeting and Cezar Bangu seconded it. Minutes of the previous monthly meeting was approved unanimously.
- Thomas Saras welcomed everyone to the monthly meeting of November 2019. NEPMCC had another productive year and the organization is working on a number of important projects this year which will benefit all the members. President Thomas Saras said that this year the Government will reward all legitimate ethnic media houses as it has a budget for it. All members that are in good standing with NEPMCC stands to get benefitted by its association and involvement with NEPMCC. The Government has allocated $10 million for the media industry and there are several programs where the members could apply for funding under this budget. In the program also included and the members of the Ethnic Press of Canada. The Local Journalist Initiative deadline is fast approaching and President
- President Thomas Saras educated members on various projects undertaken by NEPMCC and especially on the LJI. President Thomas Saras informed about the local initiative program The Local Journalism Initiative (LJI) supports the creation of original civic journalism that covers the diverse needs of underserved communities across Canada. Funding is available to eligible Canadian media organizations to hire journalists or pay freelance journalists to produce civic journalism for underserved communities. The content produced will be made available to media organizations through a Creative Commons license so that Canadians can be better informed. He mentioned under this program a publisher can hire qualified journalist or a journalistic student in the final year and get up to a maximum of $26,000 per year. He encouraged everyone who qualifies to fill out the form. Thomas Saras urged members to apply before the deadline expires. He reminded that the deadline has been extended by one week and after that the application process will stop for LJI.
- The media fund would be distributed to the qualified members of the ethnic media industry. Qualified members are those who belong to one of the six media organizations. President Thomas Saras suggested that a committee be formed that would recommend distribution of government funds to ethnic media based on the circulation and reach.
- President Thomas Saras informed the members of the various projects undertaken by NEPMCC and how members could benefit from federal programs for ethnic media.
- The Annual Awards Ceremony of NEPMCC which took place on November 15 at the council chambers City Hall was a huge success. President Thomas Saras thanked the entire team that worked hard to make this event successful.
- NEPMCC Annual Dinner to take place on December 13 at the Greek Community Centre of Toronto, 30 Thorncliffe Park Dr. Toronto East. The tickets are reasonably priced at $35 per person. President Thomas Saras encouraged all the members to attend the Get-Together with their families as it increases the bond among members. Invitations have been sent to all three levels of government and many distinguished guests from various backgrounds. Tickets can be purchased online or by cheque. Members who wish to attend the annual dinner need to register online. Members will receive invitations via email to register for the event.
- There were suggestions on the floor that any members received funding from the government under ATP may make a donation to NEPMCC as NEPMCC has worked hard to ensure members receive funding. The suggestion was unanimously endorsed as it is the duty and responsibility of the members to ensure that NEPMCC is in strong financial position as it tirelessly works hard for the interests of its members.
- President Thomas Saras is trying to arrange another meeting with the officials of Canadian Heritage after the new cabinet is formed to educate the member on the new rules governing the funding programmes for publishers.
- President Thomas Saras encouraged all to renew their membership in 2020 to take advantage of the privileges of the membership. NEPMCC has been over the years fighting for the rights of the members to stand in shoulder to shoulder with the mainstream media.
- Educational conference/seminar will be held this year for 3 -4 days. A survey will be sent to the members to finalize the curriculum of the seminar. Daniela Spirlac from BeSoacial Event will send out a survey to the members.The seminar will most likely take place in Seneca College.
- President Thomas Saras informed the members that he represented the ethnic media at the standing committee of the senate to educate the committee about the grievances of the ethnic media.
- The president also encouraged all the members to apply for an ID or Media Pass of the organization. There are so many benefits; the president said that it is to one’s advantage to have it.
Presentation by Michael Coteau MPP Don Valley East
He serves as the MPP for the riding of Don Valley East and is the Ontario Liberal Party Critic for Infrastructure, Energy, Labour, Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade. He is seeking the leadership of the Ontario Liberal Party in the 2020 leadership election. Coteau was a Toronto District School Board Trustee for Ward 17, winning elections in 2003, 2006, and 2010. As a trustee, he advocated for student nutrition, community use of space and the use of educational technology. He initiated the 'Community Use of Schools' motion that cut user fees and made schools more accessible to groups that offer programs for children. He helped introduce nutritional changes in schools that supported healthy food programs and increased awareness of student hunger. In addition to his work as a trustee, Coteau served as the executive director and chief executive officer of a national adult literacy firm, and worked as a community organizer in the Malvern area of Scarborough, Ontario with the United Way. In 2011 he ran provincial election in the riding of Don Valley East. He won the election beating PC candidate Michael Lende.
The Liberals won a minority government and Coteau was appointed as parliamentary assistant to the minister of tourism and culture. In 2013, after Kathleen Wynne replaced Dalton McGuinty as premier, Coteau was named Minister of Citizenship and Immigration. He was one of ten members of the Wynne's cabinet with no prior cabinet experience. In June 2014, Coteau was made Minister of Tourism, Culture and Sport by Premier Kathleen Wynne, as well as Minister Responsible for the 2015 Pan and Parapan American Games. He made headlines advocating for children to be able to play street hockey. On February 16, 2016, it was announced that Coteau would add responsibility for anti-racism, responsible for establishing various anti-racism programs. On June 13, 2016, he was appointed Minister of Children and Youth Services, and in particular worked collaboratively with parents to deliver a reformed Ontario Autism Program. He also was subsequently appointed Minister of Community and Social Services, holding down three separate portfolios for the government.
In 2018, Coteau defeated Conservative candidate Denzil Minnan Wong, Toronto’s deputy mayor, to win his third election in the North Toronto constituency. He is one of the seven Liberal MPPs in the Legislature.
He mentioned that the Ontario Liberal Party lost the election as there was a massive disconnect between Ontario Liberal Party and people. He mentioned that the Ontario Liberal Party has the single best opportunity to build the party from scratch.
Maria Saras-Voutsinas, Hakim Reza, Logan , Maria P, Janus N, Hon. Joe Volpe and others raised questions on a wide variety of topics and participated in the round table discussions following his presentation. Michael Coteau candidly answered all questions.<.p>
Presentation by Mila Garcia
Mila Garcia mentioned that the book and art festival organized by Filipino Canadian Writers and Journalists Network that took place on November 17 at Council Chambers in City Hall was a huge success. An event celebrating the life and historical contribution of Philippine hero Andres Bonifacio was featured with works by Filipino Canadian writers and artists, and a presentation by an award-winning Filipino journalist and 2019 Marshall McLuhan awardee Patricia Evangelista. BONIFEST also launched the poster of The Struggle for Philippine Independence, a brief account composed of 15 historical dates and periods and their significance in the Filipino people’s resistance against Spanish colonialism, American imperialism and Japanese invasion, from 1571 to 1946. The poster was the product of research and a series of discussions conducted by the Filipino Canadian Writers and Journalists Network (FC-WJNet). Mila Garcia thanked President Thomas Saras for co-sponsoring the event. She also thanked President Thomas Saras for his keynote speech.
New Members/ New Business:
Weera Fonseca – Founder, Rupane.ca Video Magazine for Sri Lankans living in Canada.
Medhat Oweida – Editor in Chief, Ahram -Canada
Shan Chandrashkhar – Deputy Editor Uthayan
A R.Nathan – Producer/CEO Vanakkam TV
Ahmed Shah Hotaki moved a motion to adjourn the meeting and Jonathan Annobil seconded it. The motion was carried. The Chair adjourned the meeting at 9 pm. The next monthly meeting would take place on Monday, December 9, 2019 at committee room N# 2 at the Toronto City Hall.