Female journalists have never had an easy career on television.
Lisa LaFlamme, presenter of the CTV National News, téléjournal, is the youngest to disappear abruptly from the screen for reasons that are still unclear. She probably won’t be the last. In her case, as Radio-Canada did in Pascale Nadeau’s, the CTV network, owned by Bell Media, will sponsor an “independent” investigation to shed light on the reasons Karine Moses, Vice President of Bell Media, prompted Michael Melling, Vice President Information, to end his contract two years before it expired.
Does it take a fortune teller to predict that the “investigators” have little chance of proving Lisa LaFlamme right? The company that hired Radio-Canada to “investigate” Pascale Nadeau’s departure favored management and produced a report that was not made public. Pascale Nadeau himself could not read it. The case is now in court as Pascale Nadeau has filed a lawsuit against her employer. Luce Julien, news director at Radio-Canada, can now point to that lower court stay still.
CAN MONEY BUY PEACE?
Will Lisa LaFlamme Sue CTV? An important person at Bell Media, whose name I am not allowed to identify, confided in me that he had been offered a substantial sum in exchange for terminating his contract. Will it be enough to buy peace? For now, the five million views (these are the latest numbers) of the video announcing her departure should reassure her of the affection her television news regulars had for her. Unfortunately, despite his popularity, his departure will likely have little impact on viewing of the film CTV National News. The management of Bell Media has to rely on that.
Female journalists have never had it easy on television. Radio-Canada’s French network gave them a more prominent place than the English network and, paradoxically, as the private networks, they had an unenviable fate.
STILL WAY TO GO
I, who knew Judith Jasmin well and followed her to her last breath, can attest that her relations with Radio-Canada were always strained, especially when she was a correspondent in Washington. He was criticized for his intellectual independence, not to mention his “evil spirit”, a fashionable charge in the societies and institutions of the time. Judith, who almost always worked freelance, ended her days more than modestly.
Such was the fate of the eminent journalist and presenter Andréanne Lafond, with whom I worked on the show Crossing. She also has an “evil spirit,” it said. So we stopped using her services when she was in her fifties and still in full possession of her abilities. Even if Madeleine Poulin had brilliantly animated the magazine Point For a decade, Radio-Canada decided to remake her by replacing her with Jean-François Lépine. In order to get a new look, Michèle Viroly was removed from the news to be assigned to RDI with the intention of having her there The most important reports, an insignificant task. Louise Arcand was 40 when Radio-Canada abruptly fired her from the 6 p.m. newscast. She was also said to be in a bad mood. Radio-Canada still thinks so, ordered to pay him $400,000 for wrongful dismissal.
Despite convictions and the current outcry from viewers, female journalists are not yet treated the same as men on television.