Federal advisory committee on the charitable sector lacks transparency and diversity, say some, leading to more “conservative” finding on DQ debate

Committee members were appointed by the government in 2019 without an open call for participation.

Why It Matters

The federal Advisory Committee on the Charitable Sector (ACCS) has the ear of Diane Lebouthillier, the federal minister responsible for Canada’s charitable policy. Their findings on key policy decisions, like the disbursement quota, have the potential to shape federal policy for years to come.

Gabe Oatley’s journalism on this story is made possible by the Future of Good editorial fellowship covering the social impact world’s rapidly changing funding models, supported by Community Foundations of Canada and United Way Centraide Canada. See our editorial ethics and standards here.

In late September, Leanne Burton was at her home office in Etobicoke, Ontario, when she first read the advisory committee on the charitable sector’s report on the disbursement quota. She was disappointed, but not surprised.  

The committee, composed of top charity and foundation leaders, academics, lawyers and a few CRA bureaucrats — had not recommended that the government increase the disbursement quota — the rate at which foundations must redistribute their capital to charities. 


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