My fellow colleagues,
I want to thank the membership for allowing me the opportunity to serve as your president. I am honoured and excited to serve in a year that will see great opportunity for our profession in Ontario. Let’s first reflect on our successful convention and keep in the forefront of our psyches the success of self-taught stenographic reporter, Stan Sakai. Let’s relish with pride in the model of world-class court reporting achieved by our talented Senate reporters and remind ourselves of not only the role they play in sustaining our profession in Ontario, but the role they play in the healthy democracy of this amazing country of ours!
Let’s be comforted with a renewed vigour going forward to tackle the challenges ahead of us; namely, court reporting in our Ontario Courts.
Technological solutions are being embraced and driven by lawyers in this province like never before, and court reporting will have an obvious role to play in the high-stakes litigation that reaches courtrooms in this province. Electronic trials are here, and our mandate is to see that court managers understand the true value of real-time court reporting in the administration of justice.
As an association, we will bring to the attention of all the stakeholders in the justice system that, despite the choice of our government to wholly embrace digital recording, our members have stayed abreast of voice-to-text technology and continue to offer the most technologically-advanced court reporting at a cost that is economically sound. We will continue to insist that all our members, should they desire, be grandfathered onto the ACT List and that the government’s cost-saving methods of providing substandard captioning/note-taking is an affront to the Ontarians with Disabilities Act. We will remind them that if they had only heeded our advice of yesterday there would be no need to wholly resort to digital recording monitors and substandard transcription.
I encourage all of us to keep educating anyone and everyone regarding the deficiencies of voice recognition/trained speech recognition and remind them it is stenographic reporters who are the gold-seal providers of live captioning worldwide at present with every indication that that will continue well into the future.
Let’s hold our heads high, demand respect in this province for the professionals we are, encourage new reporters, and relentlessly educate stakeholders on the true value of professional court reporters – you, me, us, Ontario’s Chartered Shorthand Reporters.
Angela Gunn, CSR
President, CSRAO 2015-2016