After more than a decade of calling on Canada to require greater transparency and accountability on the part of Canadian companies operating overseas, MCC joins our civil society colleagues and coalition partners in welcoming the government’s announcement to establish a human rights Ombudsperson. If properly implemented, this new position will help hold Canadian companies accountable for human rights violations overseas, provide remedy for victims of abuse, and prevent future harm for communities around the world.
As an organization that has witnessed the negative impacts of Canadian mining operations overseas and heard repeated calls from grassroots partners for mechanisms for redress, we believe the Ombudsperson for Responsible Enterprise will help establish Canada as a global business leader, committed to defending human rights and holding corporations accountable for irresponsible conduct abroad.
To be effective, however, the Ombudsperson must:
- Be fully independent from both business and government;
- Be properly funded and resourced to undertake complex investigations;
- Be able to issue public findings on allegations of harm and recommendations for remedy; and, most importantly
- Be granted the authority to summon witnesses and compel the disclosure of corporate documents.
Together with coalition partners KAIROS and the Canadian Council for International Cooperation, we urge ongoing advocacy to ensure Canadian companies operating overseas are held accountable for allegations of harm.
Please join us in thanking the Canadian government for its announcement and expressing your support for an effective and fully independent Ombudsperson with strong investigative powers.
Send a message to the Minister of International Trade.
For more information, visit Open for Justice.