Category Archives: Updates

BMO Affinity Credit Card

Dear Members,

Bank of Montreal is ending the AFM/CFM MasterCard Affinity Program. This is due to low participation rates and their program now only accepts larger organizations with a minimum of 50,000 Canadian members. Current AFM/CFM MasterCard accounts will still be active, so if you have that credit card you will continue on as a BMO client. There will be a switch from the AFM/CFM MasterCard to the BMO MasterCard. The following two changes may occur: Adjustment of interest rate and the issuing of a blank BMO MasterCard in replacement of the AFM/CFM branded card.

The product types remain the same after the transition, with the exception of the “No Fee Cashback” product which actually increases to 1% cashback reward. Meanwhile, the interest rates will increase for both Retail Purchases and Cash Advances.


Current product Product transfer to


Interest Rates for Retail Purchases Interest Rates for Cash Advances
Changed from 17.5% to 19.99% Changed from 17.5% to 22.99%

BMO will release a letter in May to clients of the changes and all accounts will be rolled over by the end of June. For further questions, please contact BMO at 1-800-263-2263.

We are currently investigating alternative programs with other financial partners and will update you as new information is available.


Canadian Federation of Musicians

For more information please visit us at | CFM on Twitter|CFM on Facebook.


Canadian Music Community Anti-Harassment Summit

TORONTO, April 24, 2018 /CNW/ – Senior representatives from numerous live and recorded music organizations participated in a follow up meeting to the inaugural March 1, 2018 Canadian Music Community Anti-Harassment Summit.  These organizations came together to work collectively to discuss an industry-wide Code of Conduct addressing all forms of harassment including but not limited to sexual harassment, discrimination, bullying and violence in the workplace, as per applicable human rights legislation, throughout the music community.

The following music industry organizations acknowledge that the nature of our work environments, often informal and transient workspaces, and coupled with the fact that the music community operates with a variety of contractual relationships, presents unique challenges for establishing national policy.  However, we agree that there are a variety of important issues that need to be addressed to ensure a healthy culture, with zero tolerance to all forms of harassment.  The music community at large needs support as they evaluate their internal organizational policies and procedures.

The second session, held April 19, 2018 in Toronto, focused on the following collective objectives and reconfirmed their commitment to finding industry wide solutions.

1.  Implementation of a Code of Conduct that can be adhered to, or used as an example, by large and small music performance venues/festivals, recording studios, music companies and the many varying workplaces in the music community.
2.  Set standards that will protect:
a.  artists, musicians, technical staff, administrative staff and audience;
b.  whether they are clients, volunteers, employees, dependent contractors or independent contractors, board directors; and
c.  regardless of their representation by an association, guild or union, or not represented at all.
3.  Recognition that there must be zero tolerance for all forms of harassment in the music community;
4.  Creation of education and prevention resources and tools that will help the music community address claims and complaints;
5.  Seek ways to provide resources and support in cases of harassment, and how to seek support.


  • Across the Board
  • ACTRA Recording Artists’ Collecting Society (ACTRA-RACS)
  • Canadian Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (CARAS)
  • Canadian Council of Music Industry Associations (CCMIA)
  • Canadian Federation of Musicians (CFM)
  • Canadian Independent Music Association (CIMA)
  • Canadian Music Publishers Association
  • CONNECT Music Licensing
  • East Coast Music Association (ECMA)
  • Film and Entertainment Industries, EDC, City of Toronto
  • Folk Music Ontario (FMO)
  • Manitoba Music
  • Music and Film in Motion
  • Music Canada
  • Music Canada Live
  • Music Managers Forum (MMF)
  • Music Nova Scotia
  • Music PEI
  • Musicians’ Rights Organization Canada (MROC)
  • Music-Musique NB
  • MusicOntario
  • Re:Sound
  • SASKMusic
  • Screen Composers Guild of Canada (SCGC)
  • Songwriters Association of Canada (SAC)
  • Toronto Musicians Association AFM/CFM Local 149
  • Travelling Musicians Association AFM/CFM Local 1000
  • Unison Benevolent Fund
  • Vancouver Musicians Association AFM/CFM Local 145
  • Women in Music Canada (WIMC)
  • Western Canadian Music Alliance (WCMA)
  • WorkInCulture

For more information please visit us at | CFM on Twitter|CFM on Facebook.


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Toronto, ON April 5, 2018 

On March 20, 2018, Canadian Federation of Musicians (CFM the Canadian National office of the AFM) continued to lobby the Parliament of Canada to include the carriage of musical instruments as part of the Passenger Rights Proposals on Bill C-49: The Transportation Modernization Act. Allistair Elliott, International Representative, Canadian Federation of Musicians, and Francine Schutzman, President, Musicians’ Association of Ottawa-Gatineau (Local 180 of the AFM), appeared before the Transportation and Communications Committee of the Senate of Canada. Through the lobbying efforts of the CFM, Bill C-49: The Transportation Modernization Act contains language mandating ALL Canadian airlines to implement a fair policy for musicians flying with their instruments.  The Bill has been passed through the House and, if passed by Senate, will align Canadian regulations with those already in place in the U.S. CFM anticipates this Bill will receive Royal Ascent before June 2018.

For a period of three years, CFM has been working on legislation to include musical instruments in Passenger Rights. Transport Canada will be tasked with preparing regulations to accompany the legislation.  The process is expected to take the remainder of 2018, culminating with Canadian airlines implementing musical instrument friendly policy by early 2019.

“It is critical that as professional musicians, we are able to get to the show, audition, rehearsal or concert hall without fear of our instruments not making the flight.  Clear consistent regulations enacted by a policy for musicians travelling on airlines that hold those airlines accountable is a victory, but we are committed to working with The Canadian Transport Agency on getting this Bill passed”” said Allistair Elliott, Representative for Canada for the American Federation of Musicians of the United States and Canada.

“I was honoured to join Allistair Elliott for this all-important presentation on behalf of our 17,000 CFM musicians.  We need industry-wide, consistent guidelines for traveling with instruments, and it is our hope that the passage of law C49 will help us achieve this aim” added Francine Schutzman.

Building on AFM Canada’s long and successful legacy, CFM will continue furthering the particular interests and needs of professional musicians who earn their living in this country. Everyday CFM helps thousands of musicians with any number of issues related to the recording and performing of their craft. The American Federation of Musicians of the United States and Canada draws on the experience and strength of more than 80,000 musicians, with over 17,000 active members in Canada alone. Proudly celebrating 40 remarkable years of service, CFM is uniquely positioned to address Canadian issues and provides vital resources for Canadian musicians, at any stage in their careers, on any platform, from live performance to recorded and film scoring.

For more information please visit us at׀ CFM on twitter׀ CFM on Facebook.



Victoria Lord, VLPR Inc.

T: 1-416-484-9047 | E:

Pharmacare: A Plan for Everyone

Today, we are one step closer to universal pharmacare – and Canada’s unions couldn’t have done it without you.

In the federal budget, the government has committed to implementing a plan for universal pharmacare. Dr. Eric Hoskins, Ontario’s former Health Minister, has resigned from his former post to become chair of the new Advisory Council on the Implementation of National Pharmacare tasked with reporting back on the issue by 2019.

This is welcome news to the over thirty thousand people – including you – who have signed our pharmacare petition. It’s welcome news to the over 3.5 million Canadians who can’t afford their prescription drugs. And it is welcome news to nine out of ten Canadians who believe it’s time for universal prescription drug coverage.

We MUST keep up the pressure.

If you haven’t yet emailed your Member of Parliament, do so now, using our easy tool to let them know you want pharmacare now.

We’ll be visiting over 25 communities as part of our national pharmacare tour and hope to see you at one happening near where you live. Find out more here,

Together, we can improve the lives of millions of people.

Hassan Yussuff


Canadian Labour Congress

Musicians’ Pension Fund

March 5, 2018

Dear Local officers, administrators and staff,

By now, you are all aware that I am retiring at the end of this year, 2018.

I’m extremely confident that all will go very well going forward without me.

For the last five years we have had a succession plan in place which we have been tweaking and implementing.

I am now asking your assistance in this final transition year. You can be a part of a successful transition by sending all correspondence and phone calls that you would normally direct to me to Jill Giustino whom as you know is now Executive Director Designate.

As I ease myself out of the office I will be spending these last months as her backup not the other way around.

Thank you everyone for your support in the past, now and in the future.


Ellen M. Versteeg-Lytwyn (Mrs.) (Almost Retired)

Executive Director

Musicians’ Pension Fund of Canada


Chers dirigeants syndicaux, administrateurs et membres du personnel,

Vous êtes maintenant au courant que je prends ma retraite à la fin de cette année, 2018.

J’ai une très grande confiance que tout se passera très bien à l’avenir sans ma présence.

Depuis les cinq dernières années, nous avons mis sur pied un plan de relève que nous avons peaufiné et mis en vigueur.

Je vous demande maintenant votre assistance dans cette dernière année de transition.   Vous pouvez faire partie d’une transition réussie en acheminant toute la correspondance et tous les appels que vous m’auriez adressés à Jill Guistino qui est, comme vous le savez, la directrice administrative remplaçante désignée.

À mesure que je me délaisse de mes fonctions, je consacrerai ces derniers mois dans un rôle de soutien pour Jill.

Je vous remercie de votre soutien dans le passé, maintenant et à l’avenir.


Ellen M. Versteeg-Lytwyn (Mrs.) (presque retraitée)

Directrice administrative

Musicians’ Pension Fund of Canada


CBC is no longer accepting hard copy CDs to the music library. How can you share your music with CBC audiences? There are two ways to do so!

1. Via the CBC Music Library by emailing
Please indicate the specific CBC Radio 2 or CBC Radio One program you want your submission to be considered for by indicating in the subject line of your email: “Attention: [Program Name]”

You can submit electronically directly to the Music Library with the following:
·  Attached digital file (WAV format preferred) or downloadable links with album art, and liner notes that list artist, composer and production credits
·  Artist biography and/or media kit with contact information

Once the Library receives your submission, it will be reviewed for possible future programming on the relevant programs. Your submission will also be made available to all other CBC Music producers.

2. CBC Music Artist Pages
To get your music heard across CBC Music platforms, create a profile and upload your music to the CBC Music artist pages

* Please note that the exclusive purpose of is to make your submitted music available to CBC Radio One and CBC Radio 2 programs for consideration. The account will not reply to requests for radio play or to questions concerning radio play.

Musical Instruments on Airlines

Through the lobbying efforts of the CFM, Bill C-49: The Transportation Modernization Act contains language mandating ALL Canadian airlines to implement a fair policy for musicians flying with their instruments.  The Bill has been passed through the House and is now before Senate. Once passed by Senate, we hope it will align Canadian regulations with those the already in place in the United States.

We anticipate this Bill to move quickly and receive Royal Ascent by this summer.  Thereafter, Transport Canada will be tasked with establishing the regulations, a process we expect will take most of the rest of the year.  We have already held discussions with Transport Canada to ensure CFM is involved in the regulatory process. If all goes according to plan, we might see Canadian airlines implementing musical instrument friendly policy by early 2019.

CATSA has prepared an informational pamphlet (available through your Local) with regard to the security screening process. If you are concerned about taking instruments through security, the best suggestion is to ask for a private screening room. The security process will take longer, but, musicians with fragile instruments will be closer during the search process which might alleviate some anxiety of the searching of fragile musical instruments.

If you have any questions please, email Allistair Elliott, International Representative,

For more information please visit us at | CFM on Twitter|CFM on Facebook.

Breakout West

Dear Members:

In early December, the West Coast Music Alliance (WCMA) sent out a notice that it will start accepting submissions on January 8th, for performance opportunities at its annual festival: BreakOut West (BOW), an event which features an industry conference, an opening day concert and various live performances in public venues.

WCMA/BOW remains on the AFM’s International Unfair List for the reasons detailed below.  All members are notified now, that they are not to apply for, nor, accept any performance at BOW 2018.

Since May of last year, the union has been reporting its attempts at negotiating a successor agreement with the WCMA.  Unfortunately, the WCMA continues to refuse to bargain. Without a collective agreement in place, you, the musicians, on which the Festival is based, are not guaranteed reasonable fees and pension.  Additionally, there is no language preventing the WCMA or broadcasters from recording, broadcasting or otherwise exploiting your performances without proper remuneration.

Despite receiving hundreds of thousands of dollars in combined subsidies from government grants and corporate sponsors, WCMA have stated that musicians should not consider Breakout West a gig; they should consider it a ‘networking opportunity’ – however sound/stage crew receive guarantees.  Ticketed events, in public venues, are not showcases, they are gigs – if the sound person receives a guarantee, so should you!

The CFM is affiliated with the Canadian Labour Congress (CLC), and we have simply asked the WCMA to meet the CLC’s national push for “$15/hr and Fairness”, based on a 4-hour minimum call, which would see musicians earn at minimum $60 (each) for their performance, noting that certain headline musicians performing the concert portion of the festival are paid high guarantees.

All Canadians deserve to be paid for their work and this must include professional musicians.  This is a simple matter of social justice and WCMA’s continued reluctance to meet this minimum standard is unacceptable.  We continue to ask, as should you: Where is all that money going? Musicians have to eat, like everyone else.


Vice President from Canada

Equal Status for Women in the Indian Act

We are Senators and Indigenous women leaders with a long history of advocating for equality for Indigenous women in Canada. We write to you today to request your support for the full and final removal of sex discrimination from the Indian Act. We ask you to sign on to this letter to Prime Minister Trudeau by November 7th. Shocking as it is, Indian women still do not enjoy the same entitlement to full Indian status and the same ability to transmit their status to their descendants as Indian men. This discrimination has existed since the Indian Act was first introduced in 1876. We believe that 141 years of sex discrimination is enough. We write to you now because the Government of Canada is poised to pass Bill S-3, a revision to the Indian Act, which will, one more time, remove discrimination for some, but leave the core of the sex discrimination in place. On June 1, 2017, the Senate of Canada unanimously passed an amendment to Bill S-3. This amendment, which has been dubbed the ‘6(1)(a) all the way’ amendment, would, for the first time, entitle Indian women and their descendants to full 6(1)(a) Indian status on the same footing as Indian men and their descendants. The Government of Canada has rejected this equal status amendment and wants the Senate to pass Bill S-3 without eliminating all the discrimination against First Nations women and their descendants. As Indigenous women, we need you to help and support us. Indigenous women cannot be successful in this fight alone. We need the support of our non-Indigenous sisters and allies, as well as of our Indigenous brothers and communities, and we need it now. The Government of Canada wants to pass Bill S-3 before December 15, 2017. Please join us in fighting to end discrimination against women in the Indian Act. Here’s what you can do:

  • Sign on to this letter addressed to the Prime Minister of Canada asking him to remove the sex discrimination from the Indian Act now; to sign on send us an email at with your name, if you are signing as an individual, or the name of your organization, and/or the name of all the individuals at your organization that would like to sign on. Please send your sign on by November 7th. We will keep a continuous list and post it on our website.
  • Contact your Member of Parliament directly, and ask him or her to support removal of the sex discrimination from the Indian Act now. Go to this website to find your MP’s contact information and follow this link for a sample email to send to your Member of Parliament.
  • Contact Senators from your province or territory and ask them to hold firm on their support for the ‘6(1)(a) all the way’ amendment. Go to this website to find Senators’ contact information and follow this link for a sample email to send to Senators from your province or territory.
  • Share this email with your membership lists and with your friends and allies. Ask them to sign on and call or write to their MPs and Senators.
  • Find background information on Indian Act sex discrimination and Bill S-3 here and follow this link to register and watch the webinars hosted by the Canadian Women’s Foundation and FAFIA on the Indian Act.

Here’s who we are:

  • Senator Lillian Dyck, Chair of the Senate Committee on Aboriginal Peoples, which heard testimony on Bill S-3 and initiated the ‘6(1)(a) all the way’ amendment.
  • Senator Sandra Lovelace-Nicholas, Member of the Senate Committee on Aboriginal Peoples, Petitioner to the United Nations Human Rights Committee in Lovelace v Canada, which resulted in the 1981 ruling that the sex discrimination in the Indian Act violates the rights of Indigenous women to their culture.
  • Jeannette Corbiere-Lavell and Yvonne Bedard, plaintiffs in Lavell, Bedard v Canada, which resulted in the now infamous 1973 Supreme Court of Canada ruling that the sex discrimination in the Indian Act did not violate Canada’s Bill of Rights.
  • Sharon McIvor, Plaintiff in McIvor v Canada, which resulted in the 2009 British Columbia Court of Appeal ruling that won status, or improved status, for about 35,000 previously excluded Indigenous women and their descendants.
  • Dr. Lynn Gehl, Plaintiff in Gehl v Canada, which resulted in the 2017 ruling by the Ontario Court of Appeal that the unstated paternity policy of the Registrar of Indian and Northern Affairs was unreasonable.

Not one of us, to this day, is entitled to full 6(1)(a) status under the Indian Act. Please help us to achieve equal status for Indian women and their descendants now. Learn about the Famous Six and read their message here