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Policy Matters: Paul Hagerman

Later this year, Canadians will vote in the 43rd federal election. Many non-profit organizations, networks, and coalitions see elections as a critical opportunity to raise relevant public policy issues. Recently, the rules for charities engaging in public policy have become a prominent source of debate and discussion in government and the sector. As we countdown to the next election, The Philanthropist is asking non-profit leaders what public policy issues are top of mind for them.

Name and organization: Paul Hagerman, Canadian Foodgrains Bank

What current election issues might impact your work?  

Foodgrains Bank advocates on aid issues that impact global hunger. We don’t expect aid to be a big election issue. 

Climate change will likely be a significant issue in this election, with much debate over carbon taxes and the need for mitigation. We don’t expect much discussion about Canada’s support for adaptation efforts in developing countries, but the overall debate could still affect this.  

Immigration and refugees will likely be election issues. While we don’t deal with these issues directly, they are part of the big picture on how Canada engages with the world, especially in less-developed countries, and so may impact how Canadians and politicians view aid.

What issues would you like to bring more attention to in the election? 

Canada’s overall aid levels are very low when compared to peer countries, and to Canada’s historical record.  We are encouraging political parties to look at the benefits of aid: for recipient countries, for the world as a whole, and for Canada’s long-term interests.

Where can we learn more about these issues?

Visit the Foodgrains Bank “I care” campaign to send postcards to the Prime Minister:  foodgrainsbank.ca/icare/

Paul Hagerman is Director of Public Policy for Canadian Foodgrains Bank.

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