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The Progressive Economics Forum

Canadian Council for International Co-operation Loses Federal Funding

The Canadian Council for International Cooperation (CCIC) – the leading national voice of civil society international development and anti poverty organizations – appear to have lost the two-thirds of their funding which came from CIDA. This is yet another example of the Harper government refusing to fund independent research and advocacy. Over the last while, we have seen the effective demise of – among others – the Canadian Policy Research Networks; the Canadian Council on Social Development,; and the Canadian Council  on Learning , leading to a serious shrinkage of the space for reasoned policy discussion in Canada.

Some key points from the CCIC Backgrounder follow:

CCIC has over 40 years’ experience of monitoring and analyzing federal policies on foreign affairs, aid, trade, peacebuilding, environmental justice and human rights.
CCIC regroups approximately 90 Canadian civil society organizations working both in Canada and overseas.
CCIC provides leadership for accountability and enhancing good practices.
CIDA funding to the Canadian Council for International Co-operation (CCIC), Canada’s pre-eminent coalition to end global poverty is at risk.
CCIC’s program proposal was submitted to CIDA in October 2009.
CCIC’s three-year contract with CIDA expired on March 31, 2010.
CCIC in now two months into a three-month temporary extension.
2/3 of CCIC staff has received layoff notices.
CCIC’s office space has been put up for sale to help meet the costs of reduced funding.
About 30% of CCIC’s money comes from outside the government, including from CCIC members, who are both generous and supportive of CCIC.

A critical and well-respected voice for the world’s poor risks being silenced if funding to CCIC is cut off.
Defunding CCIC sends a powerful message to the CSO community to “watch what you say, or risk losing funding”.
If partisan politics determines aid funding, then effectiveness and accountability, to Canadians and the world’s poor, are abandoned.

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Comments

Comment from Paul Tulloch
Time: June 2, 2010, 7:21 am

Wow, this government is so full of double talk on the world development stage. I just cannot believe, given its track record, it still gets invited to such high profile international initiatives. I think it is time somebody launched an awareness campaign.

We are holding a protest on the hill on June 15 regarding El Salvador and mining company Pacific Rim and support of bill c-300, (the corporate responsibility in developing countries act) maybe we can find some room for anybody wanting to bring up this funding cut which has resonance with bill c-300.

Email me at (mostlyacog1 at yahoo dot ca) if interested.

Comment from B. L. Wagner
Time: June 2, 2010, 9:11 am

This is reprehensible! Then again, much of what the Cons are doing is equally reprehensible so I shouldn’t be surprised. But CCIC? C’mon, this is over the top!

Comment from Jim Terral
Time: June 7, 2010, 9:06 am

The lights are going out all over North America.

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