Harper Government to Introduce Legislation to Create the Canadian Museum of History

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OTTAWA, November 27, 2012 - The Honourable James Moore, Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages, today announced the intent to introduce the Canadian Museum of History Act in the House of Commons. This announcement was made before members of the Canadian Museums Association gathered for Canadian Museums Day.

The Harper Government is proposing amendments to the Museums Act to create the Canadian Museum of History. The Museums Act establishes national museums and defines their names, mandates, powers, and governance.

“This year marks the start of the five-year countdown to Canada’s 150th birthday in 2017. It offers us an unprecedented opportunity to celebrate our history and those achievements that define who we are as Canadians,” said Minister Moore. “Canadians deserve a national museum of history that tells our stories and presents our country’s treasures to the world.”

Canada’s national museums play an important role in preserving our heritage and in contributing to the collective memory and sense of identity of all Canadians. The Canadian Museum of History will provide today’s citizens and future generations with an opportunity to appreciate how Canada’s identity has been shaped over the course of our history.

This legislation will confirm the Harper Government’s commitment to increase Canadians’ knowledge and experience of our history, as well as its commitment in the 2012 Speech from the Throne to join Canadians in celebrating our heritage.

Minister Moore also highlighted recent changes to the Canada Travelling Exhibitions Indemnification Act. The Act established a program that helps Canadian museums and art galleries reduce their insurance costs when hosting major exhibitions. Economic Action Plan 2012 strengthened the program by raising the indemnification limit from $1.5 billion to $3 billion. In addition, the maximum level of support for each exhibition is raised from $450 million to $600 million.