Canada's largest media and communications company said Thursday it will end several television news programs and make other programming cuts after the parent company announced the layoffs of 4,800 employees and the sale of 45 of its 103 regional radio stations.
An internal memo to Bell Media employees says broadcast news stations like CTV and BNN Bloomberg will be affected immediately.
The stations sold are located in the provinces of British Columbia, Ontario, Quebec and the Atlantic Ocean.
The memo, signed by Dave Daigle, vice president of local television, radio and studios at Bell Media, and Richard Gray, vice president of news at Bell Media, says weekday midday news programming on all CTV networks except Toronto will disappear. News programming will also be canceled on weekends at 6:00pm and 11:00pm on all CTV and CTV2 networks, except Toronto, Montreal and Ottawa.
Bell Media's parent company, BCE Inc., had previously announced it would cut 9% of its workforce.
In an open letter signed by Mirko Bebek, the company’s CEO, it was announced that 4,800 jobs would be cut “at all levels of the company.” Less than 10% of job cuts correspond specifically to Bell Media.
Some employees have already been notified or will be notified of their dismissal on Thursday, while the rest will be notified over the coming weeks. Bebek stated that the company will use job vacancies and the gradual and natural reduction of the workforce to reduce layoffs as much as possible.
The Unifor union stated that 800 members it represented were laid off during the Bell cuts, about 100 of whom were from the media sector and the rest from the communications sector.
CTV's investigative series “W5” will also cease to exist in its current form. An internal memo sent to Bell Media employees says the award-winning show will “evolve” from a stand-alone documentary series into a “multi-part, multi-platform investigative reporting unit.”
Her reporting will appear on CTV National News, the CTV News website and other CTV platforms.