The Government of Canada is drafting a new statement of their Feminist Foreign Policy. Mines Action Canada has joined Above Ground, Action Canada for Sexual Health and Rights, Amnesty International Canada, The Equality Fund, Equitas, Inter Pares, Oxfam Canada, Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom, and Women, Peace and Security Network Canada to form the Feminist Foreign Policy Working Group.
The Feminist Foreign Policy Working Group is pleased to release our submission to the Government of Canada containing specific recommendations for Canada's Feminist Foreign Policy. Each member of the Working Group was responsible for drafting their own section and recommendations to the government. Please read the submission here.
Additionally, the Working Group hosted a series of engagement sessions on the topic of a Canadian feminist foreign policy. The report from these engagement sessions is now available online here.
For more on this work and the Feminist Foreign Policy Working Group please visit: www.amnesty.ca/ffp
This summer, the Government of Canada carried out two policy reviews related to our work. Global Affairs Canada held an International Assistance Review and the Department of National Defence undertook a Defence Policy Review.
You can read more about the International Assistance Review and the Defence Policy Review online. MAC participated in a number of consultations during the International Assistance Review as well as submitted papers containing our recommendations to both the International Assistance Review and the Defence Policy Review. From public consultations with MPs in Ottawa and Victoria to intense workshops and high level consultations, we enjoyed participating in the review processes and now we hope that the government takes the recommendations from civil society seriously as they shape Canada's role internationally.
In our International Assistance Review submission, we highlighted Canada's past as a leader on mine action and helping civilians rebuild after conflict. This past leadership was crucial to creation of the Ottawa Treaty banning landmines and the early successes that treaty had. We reminded the government that the job isn't finished yet though. Landmines, cluster munitions and explosive remnants of war are lethal barriers to development and Canada cannot achieve its international assistance goals without addressing these problems. Read our full submission here.
In our Defence Policy Review submission, we focused on the need for meaningful human control over the use of force. We also spoke about the need to have thorough and transparent reviews of new weapons systems before procurement. Read our full submission here.
After we finished both of those submissions (they were due on the same day, by the way), we decided we weren't done yet and drafted a brief submission to the 2017 Pre-Budget consultations. In this document, we advocated for more funding to the International Youth Internship Program. Here's our full submission.
We will update you as soon as we hear about the results of the two policy reviews but in the meantime, please consider making a small donation to help us keep the pressure up. With your support we will continue to call for more Canadian leadership on humanitarian disarmament.
The House of Commons Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs and International Development is currently undertaking a study on Women, Peace and Security to help in drafting a new Canadian Action Plan. According to the government, the purpose of this study is to examine "Canada’s role in supporting the implementation of the United Nations Security Council Resolutions on women, peace and security (1325, 1820, 1888, 1889, 1960, 2106, 2122 and 2242). Together, these resolutions necessitate the protection of women’s rights and women’s meaningful involvement in all efforts to prevent, resolve and recover from armed conflict."
Mines Action Canada strongly supports this work and submitted written testimony to the Committee based on our experience in humanitarian disarmament. You can read our submission here.