Focusing on rights can help us eliminate poverty

Maytree and The Philanthropist started our series on Poverty and Human Rights in Canada a little more than a year ago. For us, it was an opportunity to explore ideas about solving poverty using a human rights approach, and to share them with other organizations working in this field. Human rights include civil, political, economic,…

Advancing Health Equity through Benefits Screening

This article is the sixth in a series on Poverty and Human Rights in Canada. SUMMARY: This article explores benefits screening, a system of auditing patients to identify those living in poverty and the benefits they may be eligible for, as an innovative step towards realizing the right to health in Canada by advancing health equity.[1]…

Human Rights and Charity — Regulatory Challenges

This article is the fifth in a series on Poverty and Human Rights in Canada. SUMMARY: This article addresses the regulatory challenges posed by human rights approaches to charity, focusing specifically on the charity/politics distinction. It develops a simple point, which is that Canadian charity law is currently ill equipped to apply the charity/politics distinction…

Social Policy and Social Rights in Canada: Historical Reflections

This article is the fourth in a series on Poverty and Human Rights in Canada. SUMMARY: This article traces Canada’s legislative progress following the federal government’s ratification of the two Covenants that codified the Universal Declaration of Human Rights 40 years ago – the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the International Covenant…

Re-framing poverty as a matter of rights

This article is the first in a series on Poverty and Human Rights in Canada. SUMMARY: This introductory article by guest editor, Elizabeth McIsaac of Maytree, provides an overview of the strategies and policies for rights-based poverty reduction in Canada beginning with the need for common language and goals. Referring to the International Covenant on…

Civil Society Under Attack

Although politicians and powerful players pay lip service to civil society, the reality on the ground is different. Ask the human rights defender sentenced to ten years in jail in Uzbekistan or the Bosnian anti-corruption group forced to suspend its activities. It is doubtful these individuals would think their work was being properly valued or…