Will the CORE be transformed into the Ombudsperson that was promised?
During the 2019 federal election campaign, several political parties committed to making the CORE independent and giving it the investigatory powers it needs, including the power to compel documents and testimony. See the responses here.
In a September 2019 letter to the CNCA, Minister of International Trade Diversification Jim Carr acknowledged that the Ombudsperson needed investigatory powers to be effective, and committed to creating a “stand-alone legal framework for the office, including stipulating its powers to compel documents, witnesses, and other key testimony.” Ms. Meyerhoffer has publicly stated that she would also be pressing the government for these powers.
Then in late November 2020, the office of the Minister of Small Business, Export Development and International Trade cemented the CORE’s fate, informing the CNCA that Canada will not give the CORE the promised powers to compel documents and testimony after all.
Canadians, civil society and impacted communities around the world continue to wait for Canada to get serious about its international human rights obligations and to put in place effective corporate accountability mechanisms. We expect the government to fulfill its commitments. We will not be waiting silently.