Toronto, ON — We applaud federal Revenue Minister Diane Lebouthillier for committing to wind down political activity audits on Canadian charities.

Canada Revenue Agency political activity audits sent a chill through the charitable sector, especially on charities that work to improve Canadians’ environment, health and quality of life. Time-consuming audits reduced the sector’s capacity to focus on key issues of public concern.

It is critical for a healthy democracy that charities are involved in shaping public policy. Charities voice the concerns of millions of Canadians and provide subject matter expertise, which results in better, more effective policies and laws.

The ability of Canadians to engage in important debates about social justice, liberty, poverty and the environment depends on charities providing an avenue for their ideas and magnifying their voice. It is vital to protect the right of charities to be involved in public policy work.

In addition to supporting today’s announcement, we look forward to working with the federal government as it acts to keep its commitment to protect and improve the ability of charities to engage in critical public policy work and to enshrine those changes in legislation.

About ENVIRONMENTAL DEFENCE (environmentaldefence.ca): Environmental Defence is Canada’s most effective environmental action organization. We challenge, and inspire change in government, business and people to ensure a greener, healthier and prosperous life for all.

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For more information or to arrange an interview, please contact:

Naomi Carniol, Environmental Defence, (416) 570-2878 (cell);ncarniol@environmentaldefence.ca