Leading Canadian organizations release new summary of federal party positions on protecting Canadian charities.

September 14, 2015

Groups urge all federal parties to fix Canada’s broken charitable laws

Toronto, ON — Today, leading Canadian organizations have released a new summary of the federal party positions on protecting Canadian charities. This initiative is to protect charities and the voices of Canadians they represent and to encourage federal party leaders to establish new legal and policy protection that enables charities to participate more fully in public policy discussions.

In February, letters were sent to all federal political parties in Canada asking them to “make a commitment to preserving and enhancing this role by strongly supporting a new legal and policy direction that enhances and protects the ability of registered charities to participate in public policy debates.”

Formal replies have now been received from the Green, Liberal and New Democratic Parties, as well as a media comment from the Conservative Party, and are now summarized in a new comparison fact sheet. The Bloc Québécois did not reply.

“Charities voice the concerns and opinions of millions of Canadians and provide subject matter expertise, which results in better, more effective social, health and environmental policies,” said Sidney Ribaux, Équiterre executive director.

“Charities make an important contribution to society and they should be provided with the space to do so effectively,” said Tim Gray, Environmental Defence. “Canadians deserve to know how each party stands on this critically important issue and who will act.”

“Failure to protect charities may mean that citizen voices are dimmed or silenced, leaving only the tax-subsidized and powerful voices of corporations to express their views on important social, economic and environmental issues,” said Bruce Campbell, Executive Director, Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives.

Protecting Canadian Charities: A comparison of federal parties’ positions on charitable rules in Canada is a joint initiative of leading Canadian organizations working together to preserve and enhance the role of Canadian charities in public policy discussions. Together, these groups represent the voices of hundreds of thousands of Canadians. Participants include Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives, Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society, Ecojustice, Ecology Action Centre, Environmental Defence, Equiterre, Greenpeace, Sierra Club Canada Foundation, Voices-Voix, West Coast Environmental Law and WWF Canada.


For more information or to arrange interviews contact:

ENGLISH: Stephanie Kohls, Environmental Defence, skohls@environmentaldefence.ca, 416-323-9521 ext 232, 647-280-9521 (cell)

FRANÇAIS : Dale Robertson, drobertson@equiterre.org, (514) 522-2000, ext. 299 or 1-877-272-6656, ext. 299 or (514) 605-2000 (cell).