Send EMAIL: Urge charitable status be withdrawn from Suzuki Foundation
(Reprint from July, 2011) Toronto Sun Editorial: The rules at the Canada Revenue Agency seem clear. A registered charity “cannot be involved in partisan political activities.” Unless, apparently, you’re David Suzuki and the David Suzuki Foundation.
Here’s how the CRA defines what’s prohibited:
“A political activity is considered partisan if it involves direct or indirect support of, or opposition to, a political party or candidate for public office.”
Charities can promote the policies of political parties and candidates they agree with, but “must not directly or indirectly support the political party or candidate for public office.”
On July 21, the Toronto Star reported Suzuki, in an interview, urged Ontarians to re-elect Liberal Premier Dalton McGuinty on Oct. 6.
“I’m offering an endorsement of what Mr. McGuinty has done, absolutely” Suzuki said, describing the environmental polices of his Conservative rival, Tim Hudak, as “absolute insanity.”
In a 2008 speech at McGill University, Suzuki suggested Conservative Prime Minister Stephen Harper and Conservative Alberta Premier Ed Stelmach, should be jailed for “intergenerational” climate crimes.
That’s non-partisan? (A spokesman for the Suzuki Foundation later said Suzuki wasn’t speaking literally.)
In 2007, Suzuki told an audience of school children in Calgary, as he accepted $835 they raised for his foundation: “The only thing (Stephen Harper) cares about is getting re-elected with a majority government “¦ he has never, ever indicated he cares about the environment.”
Suzuki has said such comments are “my personal opinion” and “nothing to do with my foundation” in compliance with CRA rules.
But how can anyone distinguish the views of David Suzuki from the David Suzuki Foundation? Its website is “davidsuzuki.org” not “davidsuzukifoundation.org.”
There’s a picture of Suzuki at the top. His views and biographical information are prominently displayed.
Who has the average person ever heard of in the David Suzuki Foundation, aside from David Suzuki?
The CRA does not comment on the activities of specific charities.
If a charity is found to be non-compliant with The Income Tax Act, action may range from “helping (it) to understand the rules” to revocation of its registered status.
If people have reason to believe a charity is not in compliance, they can contact the CRA at 1-800-267-2384. Good to know.