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News / Push to protect universities and colleges from corporate insolvency inches closer to becoming law

News / Push to protect universities and colleges from corporate insolvency inches closer to becoming law

CAUT delegates meet with Senator Lucie Moncion to discuss CCAA changes as part of Parliament Hill Day 2023. (Photo: Maryn Devine)

Bill C-59, federal legislation to implement the government’s Fall Economic Statement, was being debated in the House of Commons at the time of writing. The bill contains changes to the Companies’ Creditors Arrangement Act (CCAA) and the Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act to exclude public universities and colleges.

“Corporate insolvency legislation was never intended to be used by public institutions like universities and colleges,” said David Robinson, CAUT executive director. “The laws are misaligned with the goals of public universities and colleges to train students, promote democracy, and advance knowledge.”

The specific amendments to protect public universities and colleges will be voted on separately from the omnibus bill.

Following the staff cuts and program closures arising from the unnecessary use of the CCAA at Laurentian University in 2021, CAUT’s academic staff associations, the Sudbury community, and champions in Parliament have pressed the government for an exemption. CAUT members across the country sent thousands of letters and participated in national consultations on the legislation.

“The legislative changes are necessary, long overdue, and will help ensure that the scandal of what happened at Laurentian will never be repeated,” added Robinson.

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