July 23, 2016


The Council of Canadians attended the annual Council of the Federation meeting in Whitehorse this week where premiers from across the country gathered to tackle some of the most urgent issues facing Canadians.

“Make no mistake, our universal public health care system is at the most important crossroads in its history,” says Michael Butler, Health Care Campaigner with the Council of Canadians. “The provincial and federal governments need to make the most of this opportunity to negotiate a robust health accord and include medicare’s missing piece, a universal pharmacare program.”


July 21, 2016

Reportback by the Quinte Council of Canadians Chapter:

A few Quinte Chapter members headed out to Belleville’s Waterfront and Ethnic Festival held at Zwick’s Park on Saturday, July 9thThis annual family event has everything from rides and costumed characters for the kiddies to great music and a beer tent for the adults. We went to protest the use of single use disposable plastic water bottles and help promote a ‘Plastic Free July’.

July 20, 2016

Photo: On July 4, Council of Canadians Mississippi Mills chapter activists joined with local allies to protest a proposed dam on the Mississippi River.

Council of Canadians chairperson Maude Barlow has joined the call for federal Environment Minister Catherine McKenna to issue an emergency order to stop the construction of the Enerdu Power Systems hydroelectric dam on the Mississippi River in Almonte, a town of 50,000 people located just south-west of Ottawa.

The Toronto Star has explained, "The [dam] expansion, aimed for completion in January 2018, will see construction crews blast out the river bed to deepen the channel, install two large turbines, and a new building to house the extra elements." Construction work has already begun with gravel being dumped into the river (as can be seen in this 45-second Facebook video).

July 19, 2016

The Council of Canadians Peterborough chapter was at a rally yesterday to demand an end to immigration detention.

The Peterborough Examiner reports, "A rally outside Peterborough-Kawartha MP Maryam Monsef's constituency office Monday offered solidarity to immigrant detainees on hunger strikes at jails in Lindsay [about 45 kilometres west of Peterborough] and Toronto. About 40 people gathered at the Bethune St. office over noon hour to show their support for detainees who've been on hunger strike for several days. More than 50 detainees between the two jails haven't eaten since July 11. They're demanding to speak with Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness Minister Ralph Goodale. They want to express their concerns about state of current jail conditions and are seeking an end to indefinite immigration detention in Canada."

The article adds, "Monsef wasn't at the office on Monday, but End Immigration Detention Network-Peterbrough left a letter for the MP asking her to put the pressure on her fellow minister."

July 19, 2016

Council of Canadians health care campaigner Michael Butler will be in Whitehorse this July 20-22 to intervene at the Council of the Federation meeting of premiers.

The Globe and Mail reports, "The Trudeau government’s honeymoon with the provinces risks coming to an abrupt end as premiers push for billions in new transfers for health care. ...As premiers prepare to gather this week in Whitehorse, provinces are expressing concern that Ottawa appears unwilling to spend more on health, which is a major budget concern for provinces as the proportion of elderly Canadians rises."

Federal Health Minister Jane Philpott has only stated that transfer payments provide a stable funding base for the provinces and that any additional federal support would be focused on priority areas such as home care and mental health.