Policy 2.1.1: Communications

Effective Date: July 1, 2008
Responsibility: Vice-President, Strategy and Public Affairs

Statement of Policy

CBC/Radio-Canada is a unique Canadian institution. It connects Canadians from all regions of the country through compelling content, reflecting and promoting Canadian culture and identity. Effective communications promote understanding and awareness among Canadians of CBC/Radio-Canada’s role, mandate, activities, programming and content, as well as its contribution to Canadian society, democracy and culture. It is therefore CBC/Radio-Canada policy to:

  • Provide Canadians with timely, accurate and clear information relating to CBC/Radio-Canada’s mandate, mission and services.
  • Deliver timely, considerate and responsive service that is sensitive to the needs and concerns of the public and respectful of individual rights.
  • Communicate in English and in French as stated in Corporate Policy 2.2.14, Official Languages to foster recognition and use of both English and French.
  • Ensure communications materials and activities reflect modern Canadian values, including the elimination of sexual stereotyping and the fair, representative depiction of people in terms of age, gender, and ethnicity.
  • Ensure that CBC/Radio-Canada is visible and accessible to the Canadians it serves in a distinct, strong, coherent and consistent way that Canadians can recognize. In terms of brand and visual identity, this requires a corporate, but flexible approach – one that both ensures the integrity of the corporate parent-brand and permits sufficient flexibility for service sub-brands to convey their unique and distinctive character.
  • Employ a variety of ways and means to communicate with Canadians, and provide information in multiple formats to accommodate diverse needs, as appropriate.
  • Reinforce and preserve CBC/Radio-Canada’s image and reputation by regularly identifying and addressing communication needs and issues in the development, implementation and evaluation of its services, initiatives, programs and content.
  • Listen to and take account of Canadians' interests and concerns when establishing priorities and plans to help establish not only dialogue, but also a strong sense of openness and connectedness between CBC/Radio-Canada and this country, its regions, communities and citizens.
  • Allow management and employees to communicate constructively with the public about areas of the business that they are familiar with and for which they have responsibility, while respecting privacy and the confidentiality of certain information.
  • Ensure that business components work collaboratively, where appropriate, to achieve coherent and effective communications.



To meet its policy requirements, CBC/Radio-Canada shall:

  • Embed the principles of openness and transparency into its day-to-day operations, subject to the constraints imposed by relevant legislation such as the Privacy Act, Access to Information Act, etc.;
  • Embed in senior management the responsibility for integrating communications, including internal communications, into the decision-making process for policy development, service delivery and operations;
  • Establish plans and mechanisms to ensure that communications contribute to the strengthening of relationships with stakeholders, and support partnership and business development opportunities.
  • Establish plans and procedures for the proactive management of communications relating to issues and crises; and,
  • Establish requirements, procedures, practices and/or standards, as appropriate, for program promotion and marketing; advertising; branding and visual identity; sponsorships; internal communications; communications research; publishing, including corporate Internet content; and, communications training and professional development to ensure that communications activities are planned, resourced and carried out in a way that is both cost-effective and consistent with modern communications practices.

Responsibility and Accountability

All CBC/Radio-Canada employees are accountable to their manager for the accuracy and the currency of the information they make available to the public and the for protection of private or confidential information. Unless employees act as spokespeople for CBC/Radio-Canada or are performing their actual functions, they are responsible for any communication they make to the public on their own initiative or for any breach of privacy or confidential information.

In collaboration with communications officers or account managers, senior management is responsible for ensuring that the communications aspects of their operations and/or activities advance the priorities of their service or program group and contribute to the achievement of CBC/Radio-Canada priorities. Similarly, senior management is responsible, in collaboration with communications officers or account managers, for identifying and reporting on actual or potential issues; taking action to address and resolve issues quickly and effectively; and keeping the public and stakeholders appropriately informed.

Internal communications is a collective responsibility that cuts across all levels of CBC/Radio-Canada. Employees have a responsibility to keep their manager and colleagues informed of how their activities affect their unit. Management and managers, in turn, have a responsibility to inform employees of policies, plans, initiatives, etc. that have a broad impact on CBC/Radio-Canada or a particular service. To this end, internal communications – with a focus on listening, healthy dialogue and two-way interaction – shall be a management responsibility and shall be integrated into communications planning and execution.


The Communications policy applies to all CBC/Radio-Canada departments.


This policy was adopted on June 17, 2008



Vice-President, Communications

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