Wednesday, December 2, 1998


OTTAWA - Today, the Canadian Community Reinvestment Coalition (CCRC) criticized the Senate Banking Committee report, released today after a two-month review of the September report of the federal MacKay task force on financial services.

"The Committee's report is called "A Blueprint for Change" but it is no more than a blueprint for small change," said Duff Conacher, Coordinator of Democracy Watch and Chairperson of the CCRC. "Even if the federal government acted on all of the Committee's recommendations, Canadians would have about as much chance of holding financial institutions accountable as they have of holding senators accountable."

The CCRC noted that the weak recommendations by the Committee are not surprising, given that many of the senators have past or present ties to the financial services sector, such as Michael Meighen, on the board of Deutsche Bank Canada and other financial companies; James Kelleher; on the board of Banco Commerciale Italiano; Leo Kolber, who stepped down in August from the TD Bank's board after 27 years; and David Angus, partner in the law firm Stikeman, Elliot, which has been retained by the CIBC to represent it in merger negotiations with the TD Bank.

"The ties between the senators and financial institutions are more binding than any of their accountability or consumer protection recommendations," noted Conacher.

Instead of protecting consumers and ensuring they can hold financial institutions accountable for poor service, the Senate Banking Committee recommended:

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Canadian Community Reinvestment Coalition
P.O. Box 1040, Station B, Ottawa, Canada K1P 5R1
Tel: (613) 789-5753
Fax: (613) 241-4758
Email: cancrc@web.net

Copyright 1998 Canadian Community Reinvestment Coalition