The Canadian Academy believes that “we are the stories we tell,” and as such, the media establishment has an obligation to ensure that every media professional has the opportunity to share their story and fully participate in the industry. We are committed to addressing systemic racism and fostering inclusion in our own practices, while advocating for and building equity within the larger Canadian media ecosystem.

The Academy acknowledges the harmful role it has historically played in perpetuating racist and discriminatory practices and recognizes that diversity, equity, and inclusion at the Academy and in the media landscape requires the dismantling of systemic racism and discriminatory practices within the Academy. As the largest non-profit professional media arts organization in Canada, the Academy has a responsibility to examine our own practices, learn how to strengthen inclusion internally and externally while ultimately encouraging diverse, equitable and inclusive practices within our organization and throughout the media ecosystem.

Our work has been guided by the Equity Committee of the Board of Directors. As part of our efforts to strengthen equity and inclusion at the Academy, we have recently launched an internal staff Equity Committee to drive change internally within the organization and hired an Inclusion Advisor who reports directly to the CEO on matters concerning diversity, equity and inclusion. Additionally, we have established a new partnership with Diversio to offer training and resources to all Academy members on unconscious bias, anti-racism, and active allyship.

The Academy continues to review and strengthen goals to measure progress on diversity, equity, and inclusion. During the 2020 AGM, the Academy set out to achieve the following goals:

  1. Open Doors: Opening doors and building training to underrepresented creators.
  2. Invest in Diversity: Advocating for and investing in a more diverse Canadian media landscape, and the stories that come with it.
  3. Remove Barriers: to participate in and to access the platforms which promote Canadian talent.

The Academy approaches systemic change using the following five pillars:

  1. Internal Academy Staff
  2. Board of Directors
  3. Academy Membership & Programming
  4. Awards
  5. Industry at Large

Internal Academy Staff

  • Revised our hiring policy which aims to increase diversity at the Academy through equitable hiring practices and targeting under-represented groups.
  • Offer professional development training and career advancement opportunities to all employees in order to retain and promote diverse and underrepresented groups within the Academy for career growth opportunities.
  • Foster inclusion and a safe working environment through training such as anti-racism and unconscious bias training for all staff. The Academy aims to ensure staff are comfortable and safe; bringing their “whole authentic selves” to work every day.
  • Launch an internal staff Equity Committee to spearhead initiatives and work with the Academy senior leadership team on inclusion opportunities and specific goals for equity and inclusion at internally and throughout the media ecosystem.

Accountability & Transparency: At our Annual General Meeting in 2020, we committed to reporting on the diversity of our staff, including statistics on senior leadership at the company to measure progress on our diversity and inclusion goals. We will work with the new staff Equity Committee to accurately measure progress.

2019-2020 Staff Statistics (National Office only)
Reported at the Annual General Meeting 2020

 

Full time Staff:

75% Female

37.5% Persons of Colour

0% Black or Indigenous

 

Senior Manager & Above:

57% Female

28% Persons of Colour

0% Black or Indigenous

 

2020-2021 Statistics will be updated at the 2021 Annual General Meeting on Tuesday, September 28th, 2021.


Board of Directors

  • Ensure that our Board of Directors represents a diversity of perspectives from the industry.
  • Ensure the Board of Directors is aware of how the Academy’s actions can contribute to or inhibit positive change in the Canadian media sector.

Accountability & Transparency: At our Annual General meeting we commit to reporting on the diversity of our board each year.

Board Statistics, 2019-2020
Reported at the Annual General Meeting 2020


50% Female

15% People of Colour

15% Black

10% Indigenous

2020-2021 Statistics will be updated at the 2021 Annual General Meeting on Tuesday, September 28th, 2021.


Academy Membership & Programming

  • Ensure that our programming platforms showcase voices that reflect the diversity of Canada and Canadian media.
  • We support our members in learning about best practices to foster diversity, equity, and inclusion on set and in their own offices by offering training and resources free of charge. We look at ways in which we might be excluding communities from our work, and how we can make our association a vibrant place of celebration and learning for people from all backgrounds.


Accountability & Transparency: At our Annual General meeting we commit to reporting on the diversity of our speakers for the year, reporting on make-up of our membership.


Speakers, 2019-2020

As reported at the Annual General Meeting 2020


65 Total Panelists & Guests

68% of panelists were women

12% of panelists were Black

5% of panelists were Indigenous

34% of panelists were people of colour

2020-2021 Statistics will be updated at the 2021 Annual General Meeting on Tuesday, September 28th, 2021.


Awards

  • Examine how our practices around award eligibility, entry fees, and special award presentations can be more inclusive. Our Indigenous Narrative Sovereignty Rule was adopted for the Canadian Screen Awards in 2021.
  • Account for how our own award productions can be more diverse behind the scenes, with a goal of modeling best practices for production through ongoing reviews.

Industry at Large

  • Focuses on supporting the diversification of the traditional ‘talent/funding streams’ by promoting talented artists who come from communities who are typically underrepresented in mainstream media through the Equity & Inclusion Fund.
  • Introduction of the Narrative Sovereignty Rule: The Academy of Canadian Cinema & Television recognizes that freedom of expression and self-representation on screen has not been historically afforded to Indigenous peoples, who have been largely excluded from the production industry since its advent. Therefore, in support of the efforts of the Indigenous Screen Office in seeking “narrative sovereignty” for First Nation, Inuit and Métis communities within Canadian borders, the Board of Directors has approved the following rule. 
    • To be eligible for a Canadian Screen Award, the project must satisfy the following:
      –  When the work being submitted tells an Indigenous story and/or is from an Indigenous perspective, entrants must affirm:

      a) that a minimum of two thirds above the line talent identify as Indigenous; OR
      b)that the production company is majority Indigenous-owned.
    • When the work being submitted tells a story from a non-Indigenous perspective but that includes Indigenous content, entrants must declare* that they have read the Indigenous Screen Office’s On-Screen Protocols & Pathways Media Production Guide and provide written documentation of how the production:
      a) respectfully engaged Indigenous community leadership;

      b) followed community protocols around permissions and consent; AND,
      c) employed and maintained a respectful work environment for Indigenous crew members
  • Be a strong ally by supporting the work of advocate organizations and strengthening partnerships with a diversity of community groups.