Petition to save Canada's National Archive

Peter sez,

The Canadian federal government recently announced that they are cutting $9.6 million from the budget of Library and Archives Canada (LAC), Canada's national archives. This will seriously undermine the archives, which was already struggling due to chronic underfunding to live up to its mandate 'o preserve the documentary heritage of Canada.'

Hundreds of other archives across Canada will also be negatively affected by these cuts because LAC is terminating the National Archives Development Program (NADP), a long-running contribution program that helped fund projects by small archives to preserve documentary heritage locally and make it publicly available. The NADP cost only $1.7 million annually, but has done a world of good in helping to ensure that Canadian history survives and is accessible by all. If you want to help fight these devastating cuts to Canada's archival heritage, please sign the online petition to save the NADP and spread the word about these harmful cuts.

Make it Better - Write a Letter. Help save Canada's National Archival Development Program. (Thanks, Peter!)


    1. Yeah those for sure but they also have Pamela Anderson’s original body in a jar and some vintage Molson empties, along with an extensive collection of touks and sunglasses reputed to have been worn at night for some reason.

      1. Not to get all pedantic, Daddy, dude, but up here in the Great White, we spell it “toque”.  And there’s hockey sticks too.  Along with copies of every serious thing written in Canada, down to Master’s degree theses. My own vewy sewious thesis, “How to Chase Gophers”, is one of  ’em.

      2. That’s tuques and sunglasses.

        And that’s the kind of Philistine pig ignorance I’ve come to expect from non-creative garbage(© Monty Python :-)

        Seriously, its one thing to forget history, its another to never have the opportunity to know it because of some scam by politicians who’ll throw it away just so they can make a few bucks flipping the real estate the archives sit on.

        1. Sweet, two Canadians correcting the spelling of a guy in Canada, but using different spellings themselves? I know how we spell it in the north, but I was addressing someone either outside of Canada likely south, or someone inside Canada practicing the national pastime o self-deprecating humour, which is what I politely presume is what you cats are doing.

  1. My mother used to do volunteer work at the national archives in Ottawa.

    That must explain the wooshing sound I hear coming from her urn.

    Those who complain that its a waste of money will pay more this year just for cups to roll up the rim to win™ on lousy Tim Horton’s™ coffee than they ever spent on the National Archives.

    I suspect that the real culprit is that the land that National Archives building on the end of Wellington Street at the end of Bay Street is built on has become valuable over the years.

    Some corrupt politicians probably have a back-door deal with some real estate developers to let the land go for squat-all through the Crown Asset Disposal Corporation so that they can get a few million dollars in kick-backs.

    The politicians get greedy and Canadian history can just go to hell.

    They’re probably doing it so some ass-hole can put up a mall and an office building.

    If the head and staff of the National Archives were really smart, they’d start a project to digitize all of the archives, get Google Canada to help*, and host the servers near some hydro-electric power plant in northers Ontario and Québec.

    Then the archives would be safe once and forever by removing them from the grasp of greedy politiciens.

    *) Making Google Canada the official holders of the national archives would probably be the startest thing we could do. There would be redundant backups at various locations and access would be guaranteed. Google also has the technology and the incentive to hold the records of the archives.

    1. People in positions like head and staff of national archives tend to be smart, they also have only miniscule input on ministerial/government budgeting questions as they are administrative executive/staff that don’t work at the ministries/governments where budgets are decided. In all likelihood they are scrambling to preserve whatever they can through multiple means, including less than ideal public/private partnerships. 

      The LAC already administers the Archival Community Digitization Program (ACDP) in partnership with the Canadian Council of the Arts (CCA) and the NADP included many individual digitization efforts of specific collections. As you read the NADP will lose all funding as for the ACDP it will be negatively affected by LAC staff reductions and similar woes at the CCA, but will probably soldier on. 

      Remember these archives are spread across Canada in public and private holdings including individual govt ministries to private companies and everything in between.   Money is definitely a consideration in this debacle but the overall motivation of the Harper Government appears to be ideological rather than financial when small figures like 9.6 million to retain history are contrasted with large figures like 25 billion to acquire a few crappy jets.

      Write Google a letter, but I’d bet they are already in cahoots with the LAC at some level given the proliferate associations of both entities. Maybe Google isn’t aware they could be Canadian heroes for the low low cost of 10 million, who knows?

  2. Library & Archives Canada budget cuts!

    Well for anyone who has never been there nor really understands what these departments are truly about, please do us all a favour and keep your opinions to yourself!

    This is about the history of our great country Canada for those of the future just as we have seen photos taken in the late 1800’s and earlier 1900’s as we developed into the country we are today. Pretty damn good compared to many fiefdoms about the planet.

    Maybe your children in school have seen photos, or read stories about how the early immigrants built sod huts on the Prairies at minus 40 when arriving from cities of Europe.

    How Canadians struggled through the great depression and lived to tell about it saved in the books of the Library.

    Photographs by the thousands showing how we evolved as a Nation and people in all walks of life yesterday and today.

    So the budgets are cut and who are the real losers? Everyone of us and all our kin of today and the future.

    The politicians making these cuts purely for political purpose in “Look what we did! We, balanced the budget vote for us!” At what cost?

    Your children, their children and all the children of this great Nation Canada learning who we are! And quite frankly where we’re going day to day? Maybe?

    Dr Ted Grant


    1.  Well, I have never been there, and I probably don’t understand what it’s truly about, but I’ll be damned if I won’t share my opinion that the documents that are our only real link to history are probably the most important possessions the human race has.

    2. Dr. Grant I’m sure you realize that demanding people keep their opinions to themselves is anathema in this format and particularly on the subject of knowledge interpolation that any conversation about archiving is.

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