The government today refused continued financial support for the Canadian Environmental Network (CEN). “I am deeply shocked that the government failed to understand the logic behind government support for the CEN. For 34 years, every government, including previous Conservatives (admittedly Progressive Conservatives) and Liberals deep in deficit cutting, has supported core funding for the CEN,” noted Green Leader Elizabeth May. “The reason for continued support is simple — CEN is not an environmental group. It exists as a mechanism for communication and consultation between the federal government and community groups. It does not take positions. It does not slam government. And because it is a network, and not a group, it cannot raise money from any source except government. Unlike ending funding to KAIROS, or Planned Parenthood, or other NGOs, this decision doesn’t end funding to CEN. It ends CEN.”
The Green Party of Canada urges the government to reverse the funding cut.
“It was the Progressive Conservative government of Brian Mulroney that recognized the benefit of a functioning network to reach the hundreds, now thousands, of grassroots, volunteer-run environmental groups across Canada. The amount of funding is a pittance—only about two percent of the money set aside to observe the 200 year anniversary of the War of 1812.”