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Losing Frequencies #6: Speak Out by former CKLN Programmers on Losing 88.1FM

88.1FM CRTC Turns the Dial on CKLN: In conversation with Omme Rahemtullah, Carmelle Wolfson, Joeita Gupman and Sharmeen Khan

by CKUT News Collective

Losing Frequencies #6: Speak Out by former CKLN Programmers on Losing 88.1FM

This is an audio clip featuring various interviews that we had with people that were involved with the frequency 88.1FM - those who use to work with CKLN.

Joeita Gupman was a programmer at CKLN and a host/producer of a feminist radio station in Toronto. She was also heavily involved with the Radio Ryerson application.

Sharmeen Khan is currently a volunteer programer at a radio station affiliated with York University. She began her broadcasting career at CKLN. 

Omme Rahemtullah was a former volunteer at CKLN. She now volunteers at York University's radio station.

Carmelle Wolfsen is a former CKLN programmer and a journalist.


CKUT 90.3FM hosted a special broadcast series: Losing Frequencies: the CRTC Turns the Dial on CKLN 88.1FM.

In early September, the Toronto frequency of 88.1FM was awarded to a commercial, rock station, Rock 95. This frequency has a lot of history. It was the former home of CKLN, Ryerson campus and Toronto community station. CKLN was known for giving air space to underrepresented communities, music and culture. It packed the airwaves with top-notch social justice programming and good beats, different from the top 40 played on most other stations. In January of 2011 CKLN lost their license. 

There was one dissenting opinion amongst the CRTC Commissioners who made the decision. Louise Poirier's dissent to this decision stating it was "premature, disproportionate and inequitable". Poirier also states that as far as she can tell "the Commission has never revoked a license without first issuing a mandatory order or reducing the license term."

More than 850 people from Toronto and across Canada wrote letters of support for Radio Ryerson to preserve a place for community-access programming on the dial. Last year the NCRA also ran a national campaign called “Reclaim your Radio” in support of Radio Ryerson and reserving frequencies for community radio.

A week ago the CRTC licenced a commercial radio station for the last viable frequency in Toronto and denied the application of Radio Ryerson, making one less space available for community access to public airwaves.

Competing with dozens of prospective commercial radio stations, a group of Ryerson University students, faculty and community supporters proposed a station where the city and its many communities could speak for themselves and to their neighbours, sharing stories and music under-represented in other media.

CKUT remembers CKLN, talks about the loss of a community/campus station to Toronto, speaks with counter applications for 88.1FM from Ryerson, looks at where the former CKLN programmers are now and discusses new conservative changes at the CRTC with and the CRTC themselves.
For other reports in the series:
Follow us on twitter @CKUT and @CKUTNews. For more information, go to

Aired on:

Tuesday's Morning After, September 12th, 7-9hr - Carmelle Wolfson

Wednesday's Morning After, September 19th, 7-9hr -  Omme R.

Wednesday's Off the Hour, September 19th, 17-18hr - Joeita Gupman, Sharmeen Khan 

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Topics: Media

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