The Dignity for All campaign has drafted a letter to be sent to Minister Jean-Yves Duclos, the Member of Parliament responsible for Canada’s poverty reduction strategy, with recommendations to strengthen Bill C-87, An Act respecting the reduction of poverty. Along with partners, we are calling on the government to align Canada with our obligations under international human rights law to ensure we meet the first Sustainable Development Goal (SDG): to end poverty by 2030.
This Bill comes at a critical moment in Canada’s history. With the upcoming federal election later this year, we urge the government to pass legislation for the poverty reduction strategy before this session ends.
Along with Canada’s first anti-poverty strategy, this legislation provides a historic opportunity for leadership. With our global commitments to end poverty by 2030, and our aspiration to be a country that leads on human rights, the time is now to implement anti-poverty legislation that move us forward to a more equal Canada.
536 individuals and organizations have signed our open letter!
- Amend the legislation to affirm economic and social rights as ratified by Canada, including: the right to an adequate standard of living; right to food; right to housing; right to work and access to childcare; right to social security; right to health as articulated in international human rights laws, such as the International Covenant on Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights (ICESCR), as fundamental human rights;
- Establish regulations to Bill C-87, which articulate that the goal to reduce poverty by 50% of 2015 MBM levels by 2030 is a minimum target. Regulations must reflect that the obligation under the Sustainable Development Goals is to end poverty in Canada.
- Establish measures to ensure Canada’s official poverty line genuinely reflects the experience of poverty in Canada, particularly those in marginalized groups who are more likely to experience poverty.
- Ensure that the National Advisory Council on Poverty can adequately implement accountability of government for those living in poverty for the progressive realization of the right to an adequate standard of living and social security rights, as guaranteed by articles 2(1), 9 and 11 of the ICESCR.
- In addition to this legislation, co-develop initiatives to ensure accountability and implementation of remedies for the distinctive barriers faced by First Nations, Métis, and Inuit persons living in poverty.
***The letter was updated from the original version on Feb 1, 2019 at 10:15 a.m.