The Council of Canadians has participated in key social movements – including Occupy, the Quebec student strike, and most recently Idle No More – all of which are supported by a significant number of Canadians, according to recent polls.
- An Environics poll found that 62 per cent support the Occupy movement, in which public spaces were occupied to protest against corporate power and growing income inequality;
- That same poll found that 56 per cent supported the protests in Quebec over increased tuition fees for students, as well as the provincial government’s austerity agenda and its attacks on the environment;
- A Nanos poll found that 40.6 per cent support Idle No More, with the relatively high finding of 13.9 per cent without an opinion.
It is perhaps notable that all of these protest movements score higher in popularity than the Harper government, now at about 36 per cent in polls.
Additionally, an Edmonton Journal article in December 2012 noted that, “People are looking at other methods of political participation beyond conventional parties.” Presently, the Council of Canadians is participating in at least four social movement spaces: 1) we launched Common Causes, a new network dedicated to defending democracy, the environment, and human rights; 2) we have backed the call for a Peoples Social Forum that will take place in August 2014; 3) activists with Idle No More have been supported by our Ottawa office and are working with chapters across the country; and 4) we are supportive of the Port Elgin process/ Red Hand Coalition initiative, which has been described as Quebec social movements reaching out to activists in the rest of Canada.
Beyond this, polls show that Council of Canadians campaign issues have more public support than the Harper government position on those same issues. To read more about this, please see June 2011 blog ‘NEWS: The majority of Canadians disagree with Harper majority government policies’ at http://canadians.org/blog/?p=9291.