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February 6th, 2023

NDP Statement on International Development Week

The NDP Critic for International Development, Heather McPherson, released the following statement:

“During International Development Week, New Democrats acknowledge and celebrate the important contributions made by Canadians globally. This week is an important opportunity for all Canadians to learn about the important contributions of Canadian organizations in creating a more equitable, healthy, and resilient world for all people.

As Canadians, we can be proud of the important and meaningful work being done by Canadian organizations to address the greatest challenges of our time – global challenges that impact us all like climate adaptation and mitigation, global poverty, food insecurity, gender inequality, and global health. Recent events like COVID-19, international conflicts, and increasing economic insecurity and inequality have presented new challenges for the global community and exacerbated existing ones. We are witnessing backsliding on decades of progress on poverty, gender equality, health care, and education and Canada must act urgently.

While Canadian organizations continue to play a vital role around the world, the federal government has not lived up to our obligations on the world stage. Now, more than ever, Canada must finally ‘be back’ and play an important role internationally by upholding human rights, engaging in diplomacy and peacekeeping, and providing support to those most vulnerable. The time to act is now.

This year, the theme of International Development Week is Go for the Goals and will focus on the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals or the SDGs. The SDGs, adopted by the federal government in 2015, provide a road map to creating a world that is just, fair, and equitable for all. The achievement of the SDGs will require leadership, creativity, commitment, and real, meaningful investment.

Canada’s international development goals must be ambitious and must deliver on the promises the federal government has made through leadership on diplomacy, gender equality, and sustainable development. New Democrats echo the calls from the Canadian International Development sector to the Canadian government to commit to strategic, predictable, and significant increases to Official Development Assistance (ODA) in the 2023 federal budget and remove barriers that prevent Canadian organizations from doing their vitally important work. Canadian organizations are doing their part. Its time for the federal government to do theirs.

On behalf of New Democrats, I extend my deepest appreciation to Canadian civil society organizations and all those from coast to coast to coast who work tirelessly to create a safer, stronger, and just world for all. “