FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Montreal - Ethan Rabidoux of Stratford, Ontario and Rosalyn Yake of Peterborough, Ontario are the 2010 winners of the Dalton Camp Award, an essay contest sponsored by Friends of Canadian Broadcasting to honour the memory of the late political columnist Dalton Camp.
Ethan Rabidoux is a graduate of Political Studies from Queen's University and Journalism from the University of Western Ontario. He is a former debt collector, sailor and student leader turned radio journalist for 1240 CJCS in his hometown.
Rosalyn Yake is a graduate of Ryerson's Journalism program, and is currently completing a Masters degree in Canadian and Indigenous Studies at Trent University. She has worked as a researcher and commentator at CBC radio in Quebec City, and is the founder of Starfish Scholarships India, a charity based in Toronto.
Ms. Yake's essay, entitled No News is Bad News, is about the "vacuum where corruption and mismanagement can easily lurk" in the absence of local and independent journalism.
Yake recounts the dirty tricks and intimidation used by a local politician in his March 2006 bid for re-election to the band council in the northern Manitoba aboriginal reserve of Norway House where the only media outlet is owned by the band council.
Yake writes that "many aboriginal communities do not have the tools they need to keep politicians accountable to the public, or citizens accountable to their democratic responsibilities. In short, they do not have the tools they need to make democracy work."
"Rosalyn's essay is a cautionary tale because local journalism is virtually dead in most Canadian communities," said Friends' spokesperson Ian Morrison.
Ethan Rabidoux's essay, on the other hand, is about the contribution of political cartoons to the enrichment of Canada's democratic heritage and their great potential to bring the powerful to their knees.
In Street Gospels: Political Cartoons and Their Role in Canadian Democracy, Rabidoux notes that the earliest political cartoons of Victorian Canada concerned topics that are still central to present day debate: Canada/US relations, federal/provincial relations, French/English relations and corruption.
Rabidoux writes that Canadians love a blow well struck by a good political cartoon because of our national allegiance with the underdog.
Ethan and Rosalyn's winning essays are posted at www.friends.ca/DCA/winners
Friends of Canadian Broadcasting has presented the Dalton Camp Award to up to two writers of original essays on the links between democracy and the media annually since 2003. Each Award consists of a cash prize of $5,000 as well as a bronze cast medal bearing a likeness of Dalton Camp by the late Canadian sculptress Dora de Pédèry-Hunt.
The Dalton Camp Award Selection Committee is chaired by Jim Byrd; the other members are Pauline Couture and Maggie Siggins.
FRIENDS of Canadian Broadcasting is an independent, Canada-wide, non-partisan voluntary organization supported by 100,000 Canadians whose mission is to defend and enhance the quality and quantity of Canadian programming in Canada's audio-visual system. FRIENDS is not affiliated with any broadcaster or political party.
For information: Jim Thompson 613-447-9592