International Human Rights
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Promoting Compliance with International Human Rights Law in Canada
1993: United Nations Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights
In 1993 CCPI petitioned the U.N. Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (CESCR) to adopt a new procedure to permit non-governmental organizations to make oral submissions to the Committee with respect to its review of state compliance with the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights. The Committee adopted the proposed procedure and in May 1993. CCPI joined with the National Anti-Poverty Organization to make oral submissions with respect to the Committee's review of Canada's second periodic report under the Covenant. The Committee subsequently adopted concluding observations which were harshly critical of the failure of so affluent a country as Canada to implement the right to an adequate standard of living, including adequate food, clothing and housing.
1998: U.N. Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights
In 1998 CCPI, along with a number of other Canadian NGOs, made submissions before the U.N. CESCR regarding Canada's compliance with the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights.
The Committee again found, in its concluding observations that Canada was violating the Covenant by allowing poverty and homelessness to increase during five years of economic boom.. The Committee also found that Canadian governments have revoked important protections of social and economic rights such as the Canada Assistance Plan Act and failed to promote an interpretation of the Canadian Charter that would provide appropriate remedies to violations of social and economic rights.
Human Rights Committee, March, 1999
In March, 1999 CCPI made submissions to the United Nations Human Rights Committee on the occasion of the Fourth Periodic Review of Canada's compliance with the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.
CCPI presented evidence that poverty in Canada violates some of the most basic civil and political rights, violating the rights to life and security of the person and discriminating against vulnerable groups such as women and Aboriginal people. In its concluding observations, the Human Rights Committee agreed with many of CCPI's submissions and noted that Canada had failed to take the positive measures to address homelessness that are required to protect the "right to life "under article 6 of the Covenant and to provide for equality for women as required by Covenant.