OTTAWA/GENEVA, June 7, 2013 – Governments and civil society are calling into question the leadership of the Canadian government on the theme of Violence Against Women at the 23rd session of the United Nations Human Rights Council (HRC).
Canada is due for review at the UN human rights council – abuses by its mining companies must not be overlooked
Canada is scheduled for its universal periodic review (UPR) at the UN human rights council on 26 April. The UPR is an international mechanism established in 2006 to hold governments accountable for their human rights records. According to Ban Ki-moon, the review has the potential “to promote and protect human rights in the darkest corners of the world“.
When Canada stands before the UN to have its “darkest corners” examined, the international community must not turn a blind eye to its complicity with a global mining industry whose corporations are among the worst human rights and environmental offenders in the world.
The abuses by Canadian mining companies are a systemic part of an economic development policy that disregards human rights and disdains the environment. It is no coincidence that Canada is now home to 75% of the world’s mining companies, the majority operating overseas. The Canadian government has accelerated its pursuit of investment treaties in the global south to serve the interests of the extractive industry. These treaties allow companies to challenge environmental, public health or other resource-related policies that affect mining profits.
Canada ranks 17th out of 29 wealthy countries when it comes to tackling child poverty, obesity and related well-being issues, says a new report by the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), the UN children’s agency. The Innocenti Report Card 11 by UNICEF’s Research Office also reveals that the Canada performance hasn’t improved over the last decade.
The Netherlands is ranked first, followed by Norway and Iceland.