Canadian Voice of Women calls on federal government to cut defence budget on Global Day of Action on Military Spending
Monday, April 15th is the Global Day of Action on Military Spending and the Canadian Voice of Women for Peace is calling on the federal government to redirect military spending to environmental and social needs. The Voice of Women is releasing a petition and fact sheet to raise awareness among Canadians about the disproportionate defence budget.
“The Canadian government should reduce the budget of National Defence by 50% to pre-Afghanistan war level of $10 billion and invest the savings in affordable housing, health care, education, and renewable energy to achieve true human security and strengthen our economy,” explains Sarah Morgan, organizer and member of the Nova Scotia chapter of the Voice of Women for Peace. Morgan noted that the federal government has doubled the military budget over the past decade to over $22 billion and that the recent defence cuts are minimal of only $2 billion over three years. She also explained that there are still planned multi-billion dollar investments in warships, armed drones and fighter jets. Morgan argued that climate change and poverty are the greatest human security challenges not military ones. She noted that the Minister of Finance Jim Flaherty highlighted job creation through military procurement in his budget speech, but did not say anything about the environment or climate change.
The third annual Global Day of Action on Military Spending was founded by the Institute for Policy Studies and the International Peace Bureau. It is timed to coincide with U.S. Tax Day and the public release of the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute’s Yearbook on countries’ military expenditures. Last year, countries spent $1.7 trillion on their militaries but have refused to provide adequate funding to meet the United Nations’ Millennium Development Goals. In 2012, Canada was ranked 14th highest for its military budget. There are over 100 actions that will be held in 25 countries around the world. In Canada, events are taking place in Ottawa, Toronto, and Halifax. More information can be found here: http://www.demilitarize.org/
Established in 1960, the Canadian Voice of Women for Peace (VOW) is a non-partisan, non-governmental organization comprised of a network of diverse women with consultative status at the United Nations ECOSOC. For almost 50 years, VOW has tirelessly advocated for a world without war. VOW is one of Canada’s oldest peace organizations.
Global Day of Action on Military Spending: http://www.demilitarize.org/
Stockholm International Peace Research Institute: http://www.sipri.org/
Canadian Voice of Women for Peace: http://vowpeace.org/
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For additional information or interviews, please contact:
- Sarah Morgan, Member of Canadian Voice of Women for Peace,902- 422-2118, email@example.com