Your Excellencies, Madame Chief Justice, Parliamentarians, ladies and gentlemen.
Au nom de la Fondation des Prix Michener, j’aimerais d’abord remercier votre Excellence pour l’appui que vous nous apportez, ainsi que votre accueil si généreux. Pour nous tous, cette soirée sera inoubliable.
I join in your welcome for the presentation of the 41st annual Michener Award and the 24th annual Michener-Deacon Fellowship.
Your Excellency, on behalf of the Foundation board I would also like to thank you for your strong support for the Award and this ceremony. Governor General Roland Michener would be delighted that all of his successors have supported the Award strongly and that it is now in its 41st year.
You have helped to make the Michener Award, more than ever, Canada’s most prestigious honour for excellence in journalism. Merci beaucoup.
In a few minutes, we will honour one winner of the Michener Award for 2010.
Mais je dois vous dire que les six finalistes de ce concours sont tous des concurrents de grand mérite. Tous représentent ce qui s’est fait de mieux en journalisme d’enquête durant l’année 2010 (deux mille dix).
The outstanding work of all of our finalists deserves to be known as widely as possible. It was former Governor General Roland Michener’s intent in establishing this award that it should become a continuing source of motivation for public service journalism across Canada.
To help get the word out, we are pleased that for the third time CPAC, the Cable Public Affairs Channel will be broadcasting a program about the finalists on its national network.
We will begin the presentations this evening by awarding the Michener-Deacon Fellowship , Canada’s premier award to encourage excellence in investigative journalism that serves the public interest.
Depuis vingt-quatre années la bourse Michener-Deacon a permis de réaliser des projets de grande qualité.
The judges have awarded this year’s Fellowship to Jane Armstrong a Toronto-based freelance writer. Ms. Armstrong’s career has included 20 years as a national and international reporter with the Toronto Star and the Globe and Mail.
Her Fellowship project will scrutinize the impact of Canada’s aid programs in Afghanistan over the past decade and explore the future of those projects when Canada’s military role winds down this summer. The judges said that, given her strong reportage and clear-eyed analysis of the topic in the past, they were confident that Ms. Armstrong would deliver stories that focused on both the issues and people affected by events in Afghanistan.
Your Excellency, I’m pleased to present Ms Jane Armstrong.
Maintenant, nous allons nous concentrer sur le Prix Michener.
This year we received 41 entries from newspapers and broadcasters from across Canada. Now it’s my pleasure to introduce the finalists for the 2010 Michener Award.
The Calgary Herald.
The series “Worked to Death” exposed the human cost of Alberta’s economic boom: sloppy on-site safety practices and lax enforcement which led to a disturbing number of annual workplace deaths. After this in-depth series was published, the Alberta government took more aggressive measures to ensure workplace safety, which included the creation of an online database listing safety violations, an increase in work site safety blitzes, and a promise to hire more safety inspectors. The government is also pursuing companies that don’t pay their fines. I invite reporter Chris Varcoe to speak about the Calgary Herald’s entry
The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation
CBC Television’s the fifth estate stories “Out of Control” and “Behind the Wall” depicted the last hours of Ashley Smith and exposed the almost unbelievable story about a troubled teenager abandoned by the corrections system. Following the broadcasts, the scope of the inquest into Smith’s death was widened, making it easier for media outlets to access court exhibits and setting a precedent for a more open and transparent judicial system. I invite recently retired host of the fifth estate Hana Gartner to speak about the program’s entry.
The Eastern Door
The sustained reporting of the Mohawk Council of Kahnawake’s decision to send eviction notices to non-Natives living on the reserve put names and faces to the people involved, and sparked a public discussion in this close-knit comment on what The Eastern Door called a “human rights story.” In the end, the courageous involvement of the community paper contributed to a change in the direction of Council’s decision. I invite publisher Steve Bonspiel to speak about The Eastern Door’s entry.
The Hamilton Spectator
The Spectator’s “Code Red” series combined journalistic and academic expertise to examine, diagnose and propose remedies for poverty in Hamilton. “Code Red” provided hard data to the government and to agencies to address the problems of poverty and health. The series also mobilized other agencies to help people in need and made poverty a key issue in the municipal election. “Code Red” received international attention and has since been integrated into the curriculum of a number of university courses. I invite reporter Steve Buist to speak about The Spectator’s entry.
La Société Radio-Canada
L’emission Découverte et la couverture soutenue de Radio-Canada ont mis en évidence les dangers dell’exploration et de l’exploitation précipitées des gaz de schiste et les retombées sur la vie quotidienne des gens vivant dans la vallée du Saint-Laurent au Quebec. Les reportages approfondis ont attire l’attention sur cette importante question d’intérêt public et suscite un large débat public qui a entraine une enquete et amene le gouvernement du Quebec a resserrer son contrôle sur l’industrie et a adopter des conditions de forage plus strictes. J’ invite le journaliste Jean-Pierre Rogel a parler de l’emission Découverte .
The Vancouver Sun
The Sun’s six part series looked at inadequate safety standards following a string of fatal floatplane accidents in British Columbia. The stories detailed inexpensive safety improvements that could save lives. Reaction from the federal government was immediate and significant, with the introduction of new safety measures, including strengthening investigation and enforcement, and the formation of a new industry association to address safety and other issues. I invite reporter Larry Pynn to speak about the Sun’s entry.
I am sure you can imagine the very difficult time the judges had in assessing these superb projects in public service journalism. They are all inspiring examples of the best work in our field. But a choice had to be made and now comes the moment we have been waiting for.
Je demande Monsieur John Wiersema, Verificateur general interimaire du Canada, de nous présenter l’enveloppe qui contient la décision des juges pour l’obtention du Prix Michener 2010 ( deux mille dox).
(Pause for the opening of the envelope.)
Excellencies, ladies and gentlemen, the winner of the 2010 Michener Award is CBC’s the fifth estate.
I invite Jim Williamson, executive producer of documentaries for CBC News, to please come forward and accept the award.
Governor General Johnston presents the Michener Award and the certificates of merit. Presentation of the Citations of Merit to the other news organizations follows.
President, Michener Awards Foundation
June 14, 2011.