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Canada 'way behind most countries'

From visiting the local food banks just to fill the cupboard to asking their parents for loans, Canadian amateur athletes have to make great sacrifices in order to realize their Olympic dreams. They say the federal government doesn't spend enough on amateur sport. But federal ministers like Otto Jelinek argue that athletes should not expect government handouts.

media clip
The country's media converge in Ottawa for a press conference as the federal government reveals the recommendations of its special taskforce report on sports in Canada. In this CBC Radio clip, taskforce Chairman Harold Ray says the report deals harshly with "intellectual snobbery" concerning sport. He says that Canada is "way behind most countries" when it comes to funding of amateur sports, and that sport in Canada "deserves to be elevated" to a higher plane in the public forum.
• In 1961 the federal government passed the Amateur Sport and Fitness Act, establishing the government's formal and long-term commitment to amateur sport and the fitness and health of all Canadians. The Act called for the appropriation of $5 million a year but, according to Harold Ray, in no year was that full amount spent. The report called for the federal government to bring this expenditure up to date and commit $6.25 million a year to amateur sport and fitness.

• The actual special task force report, which was originally tabled in the House of Commons, ran 112 pages in length.
Medium: Radio
Program: CBC Radio News Special
Broadcast Date: May 12, 1969
Guest(s): John Munro, Harold Ray
Host: Hub Boudry
Reporter: Don Goodman
Duration: 17:10
Photo: National Archives of Canada (PA-130365)

Last updated: February 3, 2012

Page consulted on May 22, 2014

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