During the pandemic Federal and Provincial Governments should save real “charitable” jobs not those related to “climate change”

One of the fallouts resulting from the Covid-19 pandemic as recently reported was: “Canada’s charities say they have begun laying off staff and shutting down their services, which are usually in high demand during economic downturns, as the sector feels the financial sting from COVID-19.”

What is a “charity?

As most of us know the institutions referred to in Canada as charities, has changed, as much wider regulations were brought in by Prime Minister Trudeau’s government. The change now allows charities to “carry out unlimited “public policy dialogue and development activities”.  This means they are free to spend money on partisan issues favouring political parties. The charities of the “climate change” religion love the change and many of them have expanded those partisan activities.  Many of us however don’t think charities of their ilk are what we feel are real charities!

Merriam Webster’s dictionary defines the word “charity” as, 1. benevolent goodwill toward or love of humanity and 2. generosity and helpfulness esp. toward the needy or suffering.

These aren’t charities!

Back in 2014 the CRA (Canadian Revenue Agency) was investigating seven* (7) environmental charities however as soon as the Liberal Party was swept into power the investigation was cancelled.  Reviewing the most recent CRA filings and a news report (Pembina) for those seven charities one discovers in the latest year they received $7,449,747 in grants or contracts ($183,000) from the government.  If the foregoing isn’t disturbing enough, their latest CRA filings indicate they collectively received $22,107,186 in donations from other charities.  It is difficult to understand exactly how that almost $30 million is somehow remotely associated with the Merriam Webster definition of what constitutes a “charity”!

The other galling piece of information about the almost $30 million of charitable donations that “group of seven” received is; some of it came from charities owned by the Province such as the Trillium Foundation and the Greenbelt Foundation which are both dependent on funding from Ontario taxpayers.  Gross revenue for the seven was just under $39 million.  Six of the seven charities (Pembina attributed no salary costs to their charity in CRA flings) reported salaries for their top 10 employees in a range from $40K to $350K and the average salary of each of the 54 of them, would appear to be just shy of $100K per annum.  Those salaries are not what one would expect from those who are benevolent and want to help the needy,

It should also be noted those seven “environmental” charities are just a few of the thousands of environmental groups active in Canada and registered with the CRA as charities.  Many of them can be found on “RECEN” (The Canadian Environmental Network) and many others can be found listed on the Canadian Directory for Environmental Groups. Additionally a number of major corporations such as TD Bank and Suncor have established charities that hand out money to many environmental charities such as the Clean Economy Fund (a Bruce Lourie creation) who in turn hand it out to other environmental charities.  Another example is “Evergreen” a Pan-Canadian Expert collaborator who received  $375K from the Suncor Foundation and additional funds from MaRS Discovery District. The latter (a provincially owned charity) also received funds from Suncor.  It’s become a game of “follow the money” for a lot of us taxpayers.

How Dare They!

The Federal and Provincial governments in Canada need to take some time and speak with those who are engaged in real philanthropy and stop calling climate change activates, charitable institutions.

Save the jobs of real charitable workers and let the eco-warriors figure out how to keep their lights on!

*The David Suzuki Foundation, Tides Canada, West Coast Environmental Law, The Pembina Foundation, Environmental      Defence, Equiterre and the Ecology Action Centre

Author: parkergallantenergyperspectivesblog

Retired international banker.

9 thoughts on “During the pandemic Federal and Provincial Governments should save real “charitable” jobs not those related to “climate change””

  1. Good for you Parker! It is long past time to shine a light on these political organizations masquerading as charities and being subsidized, directly and indirectly, by the taxpayers’ whose economy that seek to destroy.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks, Parker. Looks like here as well as down South the ‘never let a crisis go to waste’ has been taken to heart. A pity none of them could just focus on the public good and leave the stealing to some less critical time. Besides, after this is over the next whine will be about how we are going to pay for all this and what gets the axe.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Fabulous!

    I’m sending a proposal on a second email to help combat this. Let me know what you think. I shared your post on Facebook. I finally spotted the link!

    Sent from my iPad

    >

    Like

  3. If your point is that groups that support environmental causes are not charitable in nature, that is a legitimate point of debate. You and I will disagree about that, perhaps. As a former tax lawyer and teacher, I spent considerable time looking at what should qualify as a charity. I feel it is more nuanced than you are suggesting.

    But your position is one that should be heard, and considered. It is at least arguable that charitable status should be more limited, as it has been in the past.

    Then, however, you go a step further, and try to politicize the economic response to covid-19. That is not the same thing. You want the government, instead of focusing on the economic impacts, to choose winners and losers in the stimulus package based on ideological considerations.

    That is not only distasteful. It may also come under the heading of “Be careful what you wish for”. If you want to argue that jobs in environmental charities should not be saved, and those organizations should not have support during the pandemic, don’t complain if others (equally misguided, I should say) argue that, for example, the oil and gas industry should not get supports (or airlines, or automobile manufacturers, or abortion clinics, or religious charities, and so on).

    There are people already arguing that those people are bad, and should not be saved, just as you are arguing against saving the “bad” environmentalists. Is that what you want? Do you think that the government should turn the economic stimulus response into an exercise in determining the good guys and bad guys in our society?

    Or, is it better to focus on saving all jobs, and all organizations, and deal with these other government policy issues later, when this crisis has been met?

    Just saying.

    Like

    1. So, you obviously have an issue with the Merriam Webster definition of the word charity. That suggests you believe Environmental Defence or the David Suzuki Foundation is “benevolent” or “generous” to the “needy” or “suffering”! We have several real charities in the area of Ontario I live in that bring food to the needy and to seniors trying to survive with their OAS payment. Other charities help children in many ways. For some reason I don’t honestly believe the charities that were under investigation by the CRA do any of that kind of activity. I am personally a member of a “not-for-profit” and we raise money for our local foodbanks, charities that work with children and adults with mental issues, people that have suddenly suffered a serious setback (an accident, house fire, an operation not available in Canada and not covered by OHIP, etc. etc). That is what most people believe is an actual charity. A group of people (many calling themselves “experts”) telling us to stop using fossil fuels or preaching the world will end if the temperature climbs 1.5 degrees by 2100 is not charitable. The political issue is something this group have been doing for years. I presume you will recall Environmental Defence using a little girl (Penelope) to travel around the province during an Ontario election preaching how only the McGuinty led party was the one to vote for. Here’s a link to the article yours truly wrote about it: https://business.financialpost.com/opinion/ontarios-power-trip-green-industries-and-engos-mount-campaings-to-reelect-mcguinty-liberals

      Liked by 1 person

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