Canada is a very religious country. At least the statistics say so. In the last census, over 75% of Canadians reported religious affiliations with the vast majority (67%) identifying as Catholic and Christian. In second place, at around 24% you have a populous with no religious affiliation. So when the Canadian Liberal government rolled out new eligibility criteria for the Canada Summer Jobs grant program in December, that would only suit organizations that align with that 24% minority’s values, we had a problem.
The information released by the Canadian Liberal government just before the New Year stated that:
“CSJ applicants will be required to attest that both the job and the organization’s core mandate respect individual human rights in Canada … these include reproductive rights and the right to be free from discrimination on the basis of sex, religion, race, national or ethnic origin, colour, mental or physical disability, sexual orientation or gender identity or expression.”
This requirement is framed as a human rights issue but the changes require the employer and employee to declare that the organization receiving the funding, are at heart, pro-abortion and LGBQT2 values among other things.
The government equates sexual and reproductive rights (the right to abortion) with human rights. Its positive stance on gender-diversity and transgenderism and its opposition to those out-of-line is explained where the release reads:
“The objective of the change is to prevent Government of Canada funding from flowing to organizations whose mandates or projects may not respect individual human rights, the values underlying the Charter of Rights and Freedoms and associated case law.”
Organizations that uphold the values of the religious 70% won’t be eligible to receive CSJ grants because they do not align with the Liberal government’s values. Based on the statistics alone, this change in criteria is a gross overstep of government power in defining who Canada is and what the nation stands for. In order for ‘“diversity is our strength”’ to ring true, policy must be formed around the implications of that maxim. Diversity is not partial to the cultural left or any cultural majority for that matter. And while this move may help the Liberals secure support from some Canadians, it is not true progressivism. Instead, it is a dismissal of the values of a large mass of the Canadian population (using language that demonizes them) and a hard blow to the virtue of diversity the Nation has so long been proud to uphold.