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Accountability Commission on tour in Canada

Democracy and Corporate Accountability Commission on tour in Canada

Press Release: 8th Feb 2001.

The Commissioners include Ed Broadbent (former leader of the Federal NDP),
Avie Bennett (Chair of McClellend and Stewart), Linda Crompton (CEO of
Citizens Bank), John LeBoutillier (former CEO of the Iron Ore Company of
Canada) and Ken Georgetti (President of the CLC). Staff are Craig Forcese,
Research Director, and Susan McMurray, Project Manager.

The Democracy and Corporate Accountability Commission is starting a criss-cross tour of the country in a couple of weeks to seek input from businesses, trade unions, academics, non-governmental organizations, citizens, think tanks and others, about expanding corporate accountability.

Our first set of meetings will take place in Ottawa on February 20th and
21st. From there we will go to Winnipeg, Toronto, Vancouver, Calgary,
Halifax and Montreal, between February and June. (If you check the website
in the next few days, please be aware that the meeting schedule proposed
there is expected to change, except for Ottawa.) Recognizing that the
Ottawa meetings are happening soon, perhaps too soon for everyone who is
interested to be ready to participate, we hope to have the opportunity to
return for more meetings if required.

We are inviting people to participate in any number of ways: through
meetings, presentations, written submissions or answering an online
survey. The website is . We are e-mailing
and mailing information and invitations to many individuals, organizations
and corporations across Canada. If you know of someone who might be
interested, you could forward this e-mail or let me know about them and I
can send information.

Please call or e-mail me with any questions. Until February 12th, please
e-mail . After that, please e-mail .

About the Commission

The Canadian Democracy and Corporate Accountability Commission is exploring
a growing issue in Canadian democracy: while corporations grow in size and
influence, the means of ensuring accountability for the impact of their
decisions remains far behind.

The five Commissioners - Avie Bennett, Ed Broadbent, Linda Crompton, Ken
Georgetti, and John LeBoutillier - are consulting with interested
individuals and groups from across Canada in order to come to grips with the
issue of corporate accountability. The Commissioners, representatives from
Canadian business, labour and politics, want to hear from those in the
private sector, government officials, advocacy groups, trade unionists and
other interested citizens.

Hearings will be held in Ottawa, Winnipeg, Toronto, Vancouver, Halifax,
Calgary and Montreal between February and June 2001.

The Commissioners will prepare a report by the end of 2001 with practical
recommendations for the federal and provincial governments, the corporate
sector and the social/economic justice community.
Public opinion polls show that Canadians are concerned with the trend
towards a divide between corporate influence and corporate accountability.
Some corporations are accepting a more wide-ranging sense of responsibility
and accountability, but most continue to put virtually all their emphasis on
short-term profits. The input from Canadians in a variety of sectors will be
used to develop recommendations that will help corporations expand their
accountability to employees, customers, communities, the environment, the
country and the global community while remaining profitable. Other bodies -
such as governments, hospitals, the voluntary sector - are becoming more
accountable. The federal government will be amending the Canada Business
Corporations Act in 2001. Your help in shaping what accountability will look
like in the corporate sector is important.

To assist participants in thinking critically about the issues, a discussion
paper has been prepared. If you have not already received Canadian Democracy
and Corporate Accountability: An Overview of the Issues, you can download a
copy from the Commission's website: or
phone, fax or e-mail your request and a copy will be mailed to you. The
discussion paper abstract provides a brief summary. Several issues have been
explored in the paper, but it is not intended to be exhaustive. Other
relevant issues, such as ethical investment of pension funds, may also be

There are several ways you can participate:
- contact the Commission to arrange to make a presentation at one of the
public hearings
- invite the Commissioners to a meeting with you or your organization
- send us a written submission
- respond to our on-line survey

The schedule for hearings, and other information, can be found on our


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