2011 AGM Resolutions

April 21st, 2012

The Council’s Board of Directors is pleased to provide the following update to Chapters on the disposition of resolutions passed by the membership at the 2011 Annual General Meeting.

  1. 1. Call for Renaissance of the Bank of Canada

Submitted by Windsor-Essex Chapter, ON; London Chapter, ON; Vancouver/Burnaby Chapter, BC

Moved by Anne Levesque/Seconded by Pina Belperio/CARRIED

Therefore, be it resolved that the Council of Canadians endorse the “Call for Renaissance of the Bank of Canada”, which is posted on the website of the Committee on Monetary and Economic Reform, www.comer.org , and which is summarized as follows: “Therefore, we Canadian civil society organizations, who work for public welfare, call on our federal government to revive the powers of the Bank of Canada to provide funding to all levels of government in Canada, largely with interest-free loans, as was done between 1935 and 1975 with very low inflation, enabling our nation to break out of the Great Depression, to fulfil extraordinary responsibilities during World War II, and to prosper while building our infrastructure and highly valued social programs during some thirty post-war years.  We Canadians now urgently need a renaissance of these powers of our Bank of Canada.” and

Be it further resolved that the Council of Canadians promote awareness of the dynamics of our money system, and call on other organizations also to endorse this “Call for Renaissance of the Bank of Canada”.

  • In the discussion of this resolution at the 2011 Annual General Meeting, a number of comments were made about evaluating the original purpose of the Bank of Canada, examining the role of the Bank of Canada domestically and internationally, and its role in the IMF and the World Bank.  Meeting Chairperson, Morna Ballantyne said there is nothing in this motion that precludes the Council from speaking on other components of this issue.  She suggested that the Board of Directors considers incorporating these issues, i.e. the democratization of the Bank of Canada, into their discussions and decide if we have a workshop on this topic at the next AGM.
  • At the meeting in February 2012, the Board of Directors agreed to encourage Chapters to work on this issue and to consider holding workshops on this topic.
  1. 2. Fundraising Strategies

Submitted by Vancouver/Burnaby Chapter, BC

Moved by Anne Levesque/Seconded by Pina Belperio/CARRIED

Therefore be it resolved that the Council review its outreach strategy with a view to supporting chapters’ efforts to recruit as many new paying members as possible by, for example:

  1. developing a training program to help chapter members engage the public effectively and recruit new members when tabling;
  2. creating a concise and catchy slogan that captures the essence of the work we do and using it in all its online and printed materials;
  3. preparing a series of bullet point notes for members doing outreach work, regarding who we are, what we do, and the issues we work on, in order to provide more effective and consistent messaging;
  4. drawing on chapter email lists and other networks to try to convert ‘friends’ of the Council to active, paying members;
  5. developing strategies to attract more younger members; and

Be it further resolved that the Council review its national fundraising strategy in order to develop new sources of funding for the Council’s work, utilizing best fundraising practices for the NGO sector.

  • During the discussion at the 2011 Annual General Meeting, Executive Director Garry Neil said there appears to be an implication in this resolution that we are not currently doing this work.  He wished to assure members that there is a constant review of fundraising practices and that the Council is generally ahead of the curve.  He gave the example of phone calls that are made to monthly donors to pass mailed packages and information along to family and friends.   He also said that steps have been taken to establish a U.S. based charity as a means of fundraising more aggressively in the U.S. for the Blue Planet Project and Great Lakes work.
  1. 3. Against Storage of Nuclear Waste

Submitted by Quill Plains Chapter, SK; Moose Jaw Chapter, SK;  Prince Albert Chapter, SK;  Regina Chapter, SK

Moved by Rick Sawa/Seconded by Fred Wilson/CARRIED

Therefore be it resolved that the Council of Canadians reject the proposition being pursued by the Nuclear Waste Management Organization to secure a centralized site for high level nuclear waste disposal anywhere in Canada; and

Be it further resolved that the Council of Canadians pressure all provincial governments and the federal government to implement an immediate prohibition on the transportation or importation of high level radioactive nuclear waste anywhere in Canada, and to store nuclear waste where it is used.

  • This resolution was referred to the Board. 
  • At the February 2012 meeting, the Board of Directors approved the amended resolution, see above.
  • Council staff subsequently sent letters along with the resolution to federal, provincial and territorial governments.
  • On 13 December 2011 the Council posted this blog on our website: The Council of Canadians rejects nuclear power because it poses an unacceptable risk to people and the environment. It is neither clean, safe, peaceful, nor economic. Staff and chapters are currently campaigning against the proposed shipments of nuclear waste from the Bruce Power nuclear plant on the Great Lakes, the disposal of nuclear waste in Saskatchewan, the building of two new nuclear reactors on the north shore of Lake Ontario east of Toronto, and has expressed opposition to the relicensing of the Point Lepreau Nuclear Generating Station in New Brunswick.

  1. 4. Against Fracking

Submitted by Quill Plains Chapter, SK; Moose Jaw Chapter, SK;  Prince Albert Chapter, SK;  Regina Chapter, SK

Moved by Anne Levesque/Seconded by Pina Belperio/CARRIED

Therefore be it resolved that, given the growing number of documented cases of water and air contamination, as well as negative impacts on health and the environment, the Council of Canadians will pressure the provincial and federal governments to implement an immediate moratorium on hydraulic and other forms of fracturing in Canada.

  • The Council of Canadians is calling for a country-wide stop to fracking operations. We campaign to oppose fracking because of its high water use, its high carbon emissions, its impacts on human health, the disruption it causes to wildlife, and the danger it poses to groundwater and local drinking water.  Our fracking campaign is outlined here, http://canadians.org/water/issues/fracking/index.html
  1. 5. News Network Resolution

Submitted by Edmonton Chapter, AB

Moved by Anne Levesque/Seconded by Pina Belperio/CARRIED

Therefore be it resolved that the Council of Canadians explore a conference with progressive think tanks, public interest research groups, unions, environmental, social justice, alternative media, peace, and others to explore the feasibility of developing a non-partisan, preferably non-commercial, 24-hour news network similar in structure to other cable news networks such as CBC News Network.  It would report political, economic, environmental, healthcare, education, labour, energy, and trade news along with general national and international news in hourly updates from a progressive frame of reference similar to Amy Goodman’s Democracy Now and provide lively but penetrating features, panel discussions, interviews, documentaries, arts and culture, and general interest programming, etc. from a similar perspective.  It would be broadcast on cable television and/or the Internet, podcasts, network radio and satellite radio, paid for by donation, fund drives, or subscription and heavily promoted by the groups involved.  This could also form the nucleus of a non-partisan Canadian progressive coalition.  At a minimum a one-hour news program updated daily on the Internet could provide the basic service of an alternative to corporate news.

  • At the 2011 Annual General Meeting, Executive Director Garry Neil spoke in favour of the amended resolution.  He reminded members that we are working with rabble.ca which is a progressive alternative to mainstream media.  He said the Council also partners with an outlet called Open Media and is aware of CACTUS, an organization made up of community-based television groups.  CACTUS has been trying to get the CRTC to use funds from cable companies to finance local community-based organizations to create an alternative to corporate media.  He said this resolution presents an opportunity to collaborate with these organizations.
  • Following the AGM, our Political Director brought this idea forward to rabble.ca.
  1. 6. Board Participation in Council Chapters Resolution

Submitted by Edmonton Chapter, AB

Moved by Marion Moore/Seconded by Pina Belperio/CARRIED

Therefore be it resolved that the Board of Directors encourage each Director to attend a Regional or a Chapter meeting once a year during each year of a Director’s term.

  • This resolution was referred to the Board.
  • At its February 2012 meeting, the Board approved the amended resolution, see above.
  • This statement has been included in the Council’s Governance Document.

7.         Eradication of poverty and income inequality

Submitted by Moncton Chapter, NB and Peterborough Chapter, ON

Moved by Anne Levesque/Seconded by Pina Belperio/CARRIED

Therefore be it resolved that the Council of Canadians focus on the implications of poverty and income inequality in all its campaigns and programs; and,

Be it further resolved that the Council of Canadians strongly urge the federal government to combat the structural causes of poverty in Canada. We want:

  • A federal plan for poverty elimination that complements provincial and territorial plans.
  • A federal anti-poverty Act that ensures enduring federal commitment and accountability for results.
  • Sufficient federal investment in social security for all Canadians.
  • The resolution was passed at the 2011 Annual General Meeting with the caveat that we improve the language by referring to the website of Dignity for All.  The language has been changed accordingly.
  • The Council has endorsed Bill C-545, the Poverty Elimination Bill and posted a petition on our website, see http://canadians.org/blog/?p=4401.

8.         Cost-effectiveness of health care

Submitted by Moncton Chapter, NB

Moved by Anne Levesque/Seconded by Pina Belperio/CARRIED

Therefore be it resolved that the Council of Canadians campaign to redress the unbalanced influence of pharmaceutical corporations in the Canadian medical establishment; for the introduction of a national pharmacare program in the Canada Health Act, and for assessments based on the public good rather than profit to be used as the basis for deciding which treatments are worthy of support.

  1. 9. Fluoride

Submitted by Toronto Chapter, ON

Moved by Anne Levesque/Seconded by Pina Belperio/CARRIED

Therefore, be it resolved that the Council of Canadians provide national leadership towards a policy of drinking water quality regulation that disallows water fluoridation, based on Canadian Water Quality Guideline for fluoride in the environmental commons.

  • The Council of Canadians is opposed to the fluoridation of drinking water. We are concerned by the health and environmental impacts associated with it.
  • Following the 2011 Annual General Meeting, we launched a web-page , UnFluoridate It! http://canadians.org/water/issues/fluoride/index.html

  1. 10. Waste Water

Submitted by Toronto Chapter, ON

Moved by Anne Levesque/Seconded by Pina Belperio/CARRIED

Therefore be is resolved that The Council of Canadians inform themselves as soon as possible of the serious public and environmental health issue related to overflow of untreated sanitary sewage in combined sewers in many older parts of Canadian cities; and further inform themselves of management options and, as soon as practicable, take a position that would protect the health of citizens and aquatic ecosystems now and in the future.

  • The Council of Canadians has been calling for full public consultation and a process to involve Indigenous communities and local governments in developing a strategy to address wastewater treatment needs throughout the country.
  • In May 2010, our national water campaigner submitted our comments to the federal government on these regulations during a brief 60-day comment period.
  • This blog outlines our position on waste water regulations, http://canadians.org/blog/?p=12091
  1. 11. Support of the Canadian Boat to Gaza

Submitted by London Chapter, ON

Moved by Anne Levesque/Seconded by Pina Belperio/CARRIED

Therefore be it resolved that The Council of Canadians supports the Canadian Boat to Gaza to end the illegal blockade of Gaza; and

Be it further resolved that The Council of Canadians calls on the Government of Canada, the United Nations and the international community to do everything in their power to ensure the safe passage of the Canadian Boat to Gaza and the safety of all those on board; and

Be it further resolved that The Council of Canadians calls for an end to the blockade of Gaza, in accordance with international law.

  • October 2009, we highlighted an Amnesty International report that stated that Palestinians are denied the human right to water, http://canadians.org/blog/?p=1936;
  • March 2010, we noted the opposition expressed by the Canadian Union of Public Employees, the Canadian Union of Postal Workers, the New Democratic Party, Amnesty International, Avaaz.org and Greenpeace to the Israeli attack on the Boats to Gaza, http://canadians.org/blog/?p=3250;
  • June 2010, we highlighted that Amnesty International Canada says, “It is imperative that Israel lifts the blockade of Gaza without delay, as it is a form of collective punishment in contravention of international law and primarily affects the most vulnerable among the population”, http://canadians.org/blog/?p=3304;
  • February 2011, we noted that the Delta Optimist had reported, “The Delta/Richmond chapter of the Council of Canadians is hosting a social evening (on February 25) to help raise funds to support the Canadian Boat to Gaza. This boat will join the Freedom Flotilla II sailing the end of March to challenge Israel’s illegal blockade of Gaza”, http://canadians.org/blog/?p=5652 and http://canadians.org/blog/?p=5524;
  • September 2011, we reported that Catarina de Albuquerque, the Special Rapporteur on the human right to safe drinking water and sanitation, stated, “This reality (of 90-95 per cent of Gaza’s water polluted and unfit for human consumption) is a grave threat to the health and dignity of the people living in Gaza and immediate measures are required to ensure full enjoyment of the rights to water and sanitation. Israel must facilitate the entry of necessary materials to rebuild the water and sanitation systems in Gaza, as a matter of priority, otherwise this public health catastrophe will continue unabated”, http://canadians.org/blog/?p=10455.

12.       Vision for Canada

Inverness County Chapter, NS

Moved by Anne Levesque/Seconded by Pina Belperio/REFERRED TO THE BOARD

Therefore be it resolved that the Council of Canadians, in consultation with chapter activists, develop a clear vision of the Canada we are proposing to work toward.  The product of this consultation should be an accessible, engaging, inspiring, meaningful and powerful document to engage Canadians and challenge the dominant, destructive worldview spouted by elites.

  • This resolution was referred to the Board.
  • The Board of Directors noted at the February 2012 meeting that we adopted such a Vision Statement in June 2011 and it is posted on our website http://canadians.org/about/vision.html
  • Our challenge to the dominant worldview of the elite is expressed in our opposition to the Davos agenda and in all our campaign work, see http://canadians.org/blog/?p=13332

  1. 13. Return to peace keeping role

Submitted by the Kamloops Chapter, BC

Moved by Anne Levesque/Seconded by Pina Belperio/REFERRED TO THE BOARD

 
Therefore be it resolved that the Council of Canadians engage in a campaign urging the Canadian government to restore Canada’s peacekeeping capacity and to commit a greater number of Canadian Forces to traditional peacekeeping roles within the United Nations.

  • This resolution was referred to the Board.
  • At the February 2012 meeting, the Board of Directors noted the Council is a member of the Canadian Peace Alliance with representation on its Board of Directors.
  • The Council has a strong position on supporting Canada’s peacekeeping role and this is incorporated into all our work.
  • Our past statements on peacekeeping can be found at http://www.canadians.org/peace/issues/peacekeeping.html
 

  1. 14. Climate Change

Submitted by the Kamloops Chapter, BC

Moved by Bill Moore-Kilgannon/Seconded by Bob Ages/CARRIED

Therefore be it resolved that the Council of Canadians urge the Harper government to:

  1. Reinstate full funding to Environment Canada and
  2. Cancel the layoffs of the climate research scientists and meteorologists.
  • This resolution was referred to the Board.
  • At the February 2012 meeting, the Board of Directors affirmed our support of this resolution and referred to the work we have done on this issue which includes numerous press releases and letters written by Maude Barlow to scientists.
  • The Council has called for the cancellation of the layoffs of Environment Canada staff, see http://canadians.org/blog/?p=10267
  1. 15. U.S. Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act

Submitted by the Windsor Essex Chapter, ON

Moved by Anne Levesque/Seconded by Steven Shrybman/DEFEATED

Therefore be it resolved that the Council of Canadians send a strong message to the Canadian government opposing the U.S. Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act as an infringement of Canadian sovereignty.

  • This resolution was referred to the Board.
  • At the February 2012 meeting, the Board of Directors defeated this resolution on the grounds that we support the payment of taxes by rich people.

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