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Budget 2017

Want to read CPJ's commentary on Canada's federal budget? 

CPJ's recommendations for, and responses to, the federal government's annual budget.

A Gender-Based Budget with Little Ambition

Budget 2018 is an important symbolic step for women, but doesn’t go far enough

Citizens for Public Justice (CPJ) is encouraged to see the federal government release Federal Budget 2018 with a gender-based analysis, the first federal budget in Canada to do so. However, Budget 2018 lacks the ambition needed to make real advancements for all women in Canada, particularly those living in poverty or struggling to make ends meet. Without meaningful funding for a Canadian Poverty Reduction Strategy, this budget leaves them behind for another year.

Beyond Productivity: Promoting the Well-being of Canadians

Submission to the Standing Committee on Finance Pre-Budget Consultations
August 2017
Download the brief (PDF)

Focusing the budget discussion narrowly on productivity and competitiveness diminishes Canadians to our economic “value” as workers. This framework fails to account for personal fulfilment, community well-being, and ecological integrity. And, it ignores the importance and benefits of connection, culture, and creativity. Drawing on CPJ’s recent submissions to consultations on climate change, housing, and poverty reduction, and our work on refugees, CPJ hase developed a number of recommendations for Budget 2018 focused on human and ecological flourishing.

Budget 2017 moves ahead cautiously on poverty and climate

Positive steps that lack needed urgency for low-income Canadians and refugees

With Budget 2017, Finance Minister Bill Morneau has made tentative financial commitments to key priorities identified in their consultations on housing and climate change, though not on international development.

However, the government’s spending priorities fail to understand the depth of the problems of poverty in Canada, climate change, and the concerns of refugees and newcomers – leaving these problems for our children to resolve.

Delivering the Promise of Justice

Submission to the Standing Committee on Finance Pre-Budget Consultations
August 2016
Download the brief
CPJ believes that the Government of Canada must act on its commitments and develop policy that is grounded in the common good. We encourage the government to take a holistic perspective in the preparation of Budget 2017 – one that addresses the needs of the most vulnerable in Canadian society and contributes to the well-being of both people and the planet. 

Budget 2016: Significant Progress, Glaring Omissions

“Growing the Middle Class” is the title of the first budget presented by Canada’s new federal government. The Liberals hope that citizens will find “sunny ways” inside these pages – and in several ways we should. But this budget also raises some important, longer-term challenges for Canadians.

Alternative Federal Budget 2016: It’s Time to Move On!

This year’s document calls for “structured spending” that would increase federal government spending to $37.9 billion, or almost $9 billion more than the new Liberal government must spend to meet its own election promises. As well, “The Alternative Federal Budget raises the bar on trans­parency by providing an accounting of the distribu­tional impacts on Canadian families of all proposed changes in taxation, transfers, and program spend­ing—something no government budget, federal or provincial, has ever undertaken.”

Making Real Change for the Common Good

Submission to the Standing Committee on Finance Pre-Budget Consultations
February 2016
Download the brief
CPJ believes that the federal government has a moral commitment to develop policy that is grounded in the common good, giving priority to addressing the needs of the most vulnerable in Canadian society and for ensuring that Canada contributes to the well-being of people and the planet.

Budget 2015 Chooses to Overlook Climate Change and Poverty

Budget 2015 ignores the 4.8 million Canadians who live in poverty. And with major climate negotiations coming later this year, it ignores the climate crisis that future generations will have to deal with. It ignores the tens of thousands of vulnerable refugees who come to Canada looking for a better life.

Delivering the Good: Twenty Years of Alternative Budgets

Budgets are documents that clarify our values – they say where our hearts really lie (they may also show how we “lie” if we do not walk the talk!) Politicians (just like faith communities, perhaps) may profess in speech to believe in the greater good. Where and how we spend money, and from where and how we collect it, often communicates even more than what we say.

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