In the news

Below is a selection of news articles on issues related to the work of the CNCA. The views expressed are not necessarily those of the network.


Canada’s ‘toothless’ new corporate watchdog is a broken promise and a major setback for human rights

15 May, 2019

On the 8th of April, the Canadian government backtracked on a commitment to create an independent ombudsperson on corporate human rights. Instead, they appointed a special adviser to the Minister of International Trade Diversification, stripping the new office of all powers and mandate to investigate allegations of abuse tied to Canadian companies overseas.

What can explain this major setback? The answer is that industry influence in Canada gutted the creation of this innovative office before it could get off the ground.

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Why does Justin Trudeau succumb to corporate pressure?

08 May, 2019

The latest win for corporate Canada is in an executive order issued by the Prime Minister’s Office that creates the first-ever Canadian Ombudsperson for Responsible Enterprise. Initially, it will apply only to the Canadian garment and resource extraction sectors. The name of the new position, and the government fanfare about it, belie the fact that the Liberals have stripped the new ombudsperson of the investigatory powers that they’ve been promising for years.

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Corporate accountability is also a feminist issue

08 May, 2019

To address corporate misconduct, the federal government needs to truly commit to independence and power in an ombudsperson because the safety and well-being of Indigenous women are at stake.

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UN official criticizes Canadian delays setting up corporate ethics watchdog

30 April, 2019

Canada’s international reputation will be damaged if it doesn’t give real power to its new watchdog on responsible corporate conduct, warns a United Nations rights watchdog.

Surya Deva, the chair of the UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights, is in Ottawa this week and will be seeking answers from the government on why it took 15 months to appoint its new “ombudsperson for responsible enterprise.”

Deva said Canada is falling behind other countries such as France, Germany, Switzerland and Australia in enacting laws to improve the conduct of their companies operating abroad, especially in less developed countries.

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Canada has a new watchdog for corporate ethics. But where are its teeth?

09 April, 2019

“International Trade Minister Jim Carr could have — make that should have — waited until he had the real goods before announcing on Monday the appointment of Sheri Meyerhoffer as the first Canadian Ombudsperson for Responsible Enterprise (CORE).” – Jennifer Wells writes for the Toronto Star.

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Feds vowed a watchdog to oversee Canadian businesses abroad. Where is it?

29 January, 2019

Doing business the Canadian way. What does that mean precisely?

I posed that question a year ago when the federal government announced the creation of the Canadian Ombudsperson for Responsible Enterprise, or CORE….Twelve months later, where are we? Global Affairs Canada says that “progress continues” in the selection of the ombudsperson.

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