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The Ontario Government has announced the introduction of the “Student Choice Initiative”. This will affect student levies that support campus services and organizations that have not been designated as “essential” as outlined in the new policy. As it stands right now campus media (radio, newspapers) have not been categorized as such. This could jeopardize the future of our radio station not to mention freedom of speech and expression. In July 2019 it will be compulsory for all U of T undergraduate students to go online and indicate what services and groups they wish to opt-out of supporting. Student levies make up roughly 50% of the radio stations revenue. The fees we collect from undergrad students helps CIUT-FM cover its annual operating budget. Included in the budget are fixed costs such as transmitter site rental fees, music royalties, salaries, etc. A significant loss of revenue would put CIUT-FM at risk to the point of collapse or to become unrecognizable as we know it today. CIUT-FM is the last FM campus community radio service in Toronto and therefore an opt-out is not acceptable for our organization. We remain firm in our belief that CIUT-FM is an essential and vital voice for the community on campus and at large. In part, our mission is to deliver the best programming we possibly can. We strive to meet the expectations of the CRTC and our audience by broadcasting the best alternative to mainstream and CBC radio. Our music and spoken word programming is unique, distinct, and crucial.

Please contact your local Member of Provincial Parliament (MPP) immediately. Let them know what is at stake. You can ask them to stop the Student Choice Initiative and/or to have campus media included as an “essential” service. You can find out which MPP you need to contact by going to ola.org/en/get-involved/contact-mpp and/or you may contact me at ken.stowar@ciut.fm.

The formal framework for the “Student Choice Initiative” has yet to be delivered. Apparently this will happen sometime in March but no specific date has been provided by the Ontario Government.


Tuesday, January 15th marks the 32nd anniversary of CIUT-FM 89.5 as a campus community radio station in Toronto. It was at 6 am on January 15th, 1987 when CIUT began to broadcast with a full FM service. From 1965 to 1986 the station could only be heard on the St. George campus of the U of T. Since the birth of this radio station there have been thousands upon thousands of U of T undergrads and members of the community at large that have volunteered their time as on air presenters, board technicians, producers, researchers, and much more. All deserve a thank you for their past and ongoing contributions.

We would also like to thank the millions of listeners who over the past 32 years made a choice to listen to CIUT-FM, those that continue to listen and to all of the new listeners that find CIUT-FM on a daily basis.

Thanks to everyone for their wonderful financial support during the past 32 years. We are still here because of your ongoing generosity We all look forward to the next 32 years and beyond.

Our hosts Stefanie Dreyer and Parul Bansal will guide you through stories in Canada and abroad, from Toronto to Beirut. We talk to a Dutch weed producer on why he’s setting his sights on the Canadian market and a master arborist taking care of Toronto’s canopy. We visit a Florida man preserving Puerto Rican artifacts and an Edmonton pharmacy on the frontlines of the housing and opioid crisis. We hear how heartshots are better than headshots and much, much more… Join Stefanie, Parul and the Fellows in Global Journalism on their Global Beats.

Global Beats was produced by the Fellowship in Global Journalism at the University of Toronto’s Munk School of Global Affairs with the extensive support of Sarah Martin. The fellows involved were, in alphabetical order: Parul Bansal, Christine Bear, Viviane Callier, Susanne Courtney, Stefanie Dreyer, Eleanor Gebrou, Marie-Claude Gregoire, Priya Iyer, Ruth Jones, Dylan Klempner, Lizan Nijkrake, Sarah Schulman, Laetitia Van der Vennet, Lindsey Vodarek and Susannah Walden.

Listen to Global Beats Local Stories here:

1. GlobalBeats1.mp3     
2. GlobalBeats2.mp3     

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