May 7, 2019 – Ottawa, Ontario – Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat
The Honourable Joyce Murray, President of the Treasury Board and Minister of Digital Government, today issued the following statement on the reports tabled by the Auditor General:
“We thank the Auditor General for his work. The recommendations put forward will help us deliver on our plan to grow the middle class and people working hard to join it, in a fiscally responsible and effective manner.
“We have already begun to take action on these recommendations. We have invested in government call centres to better serve Canadians and taken steps to ensure the safety of our RCMP officers. At the same time, Budget 2019 includes funding to implement a comprehensive Border Enforcement Strategy to strengthen processes at the border and ensure the asylum system remains available to those seeking Canada’s protection.
“We are the first federal government to introduce a clear definition of non-partisan communications and a third-party review process to ensure its advertising is non-partisan. And since introducing the new process, the Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat and Public Services and Procurement Canada have not received a single formal complaint about partisanship in government advertising.
“Our advertising review mechanism was launched in 2016 and captured the vast majority of advertising expenditures. However, we recognize that advertising is changing, most notably with the increase in the use of digital platforms. As a result, we are lowering the dollar value threshold that triggers a mandatory third-party review to ensure the vast majority of advertising continues to be reviewed.
“To go further, we will also begin assessing immediately how the review mechanism can address audience reach and risk of campaigns.
“We are committed to continuous improvement of government operations, and we are instilling a culture of measurement, evaluation and innovation to deliver policy and programs that serve and support all Canadians.”