Ecumenical Advocacy Efforts
On January 21, along with another dozen national church leaders, Ken Thorson of OMI Lacombe Canada and Luc Tardif of Notre Dame du Cap signed a letter in appreciation of the federal government’s tabling of Bill C-15 (legislation to implement the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.) A similar Bill passed the House of Commons in 2018, but died in the Senate when the 2019 election was called. The Canadian churches (and the Oblates) see this new legislation as necessary step towards reconciliation with Indigenous peoples, and are working together to advocate for more just relationships. Ken Forster, Nnaemeka Ali OMI and Ken Thorson, participated by Zoom in a January 29th briefing on the proposed legislation with Canada’s Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, the Hon. David Lametti.
On February 9th, another advocacy action was supported by OMI Lacombe Canada and the Centre Oblat: A Voice for Justice, when they joined over 50 Catholic entities in signing a letter requesting a stronger and more effective mandate for Canada’s Ombudsperson for Responsible Enterprise. This initiative, directed towards ensuring better practices by Canadian mining companies overseas, was also supported by the CCCB, the Canadian Religious Conference and Development and Peace Caritas – Canada.