Saturday, September 23, 2006

On quick turnarounds

The Cons show once again that while they may be looking for ways to appease the base behind closed doors, they'll cave the moment an issue goes public. This time, the issue is funding to women's groups, as the two groups highlighted by the NDP this week have both had their funding restored for the next year:
A pair of women's groups that had prepared to close their doors for fear of cuts by the Conservative government learned Friday their federal funding has been secured for at least another year.

The National Association of Women and the Law and the Canadian Feminist Alliance for International Action had both taken steps to scale down their operations because of unusual delays in getting approvals for their funding.

Uncertainty has reigned around programs supported by Status of Women Canada since a campaign began this summer by pro-Conservative groups to axe the department. Status of Women Minister Bev Oda has so far failed to publicly defend her department, and has instead made allusions to mismanagement and wasted funds.
Needless to say, there's no reason for confidence that the Cons would have extended the funding if they had the cushion of a majority Parliament. But for now at least, there isn't much doubt that the Cons can be pushed to reverse back-room decisions (or wilful inaction) as long as a group can call enough public attention to an issue. Which should only provide all the more incentive for Canadians to keep a close eye on what the Cons are and aren't doing in the meantime.

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