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March 24th, 2021

Liberals and Conservatives block NDP bill to improve ethical investment of Canada Pension Plan

OTTAWA – Today, Liberal and Conservatives refused to work with the NDP to ensure the Canada Pension Plan (CPP) invested ethically in ways that would make Canadians proud. NDP MP Alistair MacGregor (Cowichan–Malahat–Langford) had proposed a law that would require a company's record on human rights, labour rights and environmental rights be considered before Canadians' pension plan money was invested.

“It’s incredibly disappointing that the government didn’t work with us to ensure Canadians’ money is being invested in companies with good ethical practices. Many of these corporations have extracted obscene amounts of wealth from countries with corrupt or despotic governments that do not have the same environmental, labour, or human rights protections we take for granted here in Canada,” said MacGregor. “Everyone wants good returns on their pension plan investments, but there must be a basic level of responsibility to ensure this money isn’t being used to support companies who are actively abusing human rights or irreparably harming the planet.”

Each year, billions of dollars of the Canadian pension fund are invested in big polluters like oil, gas, and coal mining companies, in addition to weapons manufacturers and formerly private for-profit American prisons that detained immigrants along the US-Mexico border. MacGregor’s bill proposed standards and restrictions that would end these unethical practices.

“Canadians expect the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board to do better when investing our money. The government makes big promises about accountability and transparency, but they don’t back up that talk with meaningful action,” said MacGregor. “New Democrats will keep fighting to both ensure the financial security of Canadians in their retirement years and that CPP funds are not causing human misery around the world.”